Jerry Windle always knew that he wanted to be a father, even when he was a very little boy. However, since he was a single guy and was a gay, he often heard from others that he could never become a parent.
“Even people who loved me said you can’t be a parent if you’re going to be gay. It’s just not possible,” he said.
Then, in the most amazing manner imaginable, he proved to everyone that they were wrong.
When I was a teenager in the late 1990s, being homosexual and trying to have a family was not really an option.
Jerry shared his thoughts and said, “There was such hatred and prejudice around the notion of a homosexual person becoming a parent.”
He didn’t stop believing it until he saw a story in a magazine about a father who had adopted a child from Cambodia. At that point, he changed his mind. Jerry’s desire to one day become a parent was awakened by the fact that there was no mention of a mother in the story.
He didn’t waste any time in calling the adoption agency that was mentioned in the article, and he couldn’t contain his joy when they told him that he qualified to become a parent! A few months later, he found himself in an orphanage in Cambodia holding a very sick little child who was just 2 years old.
“I had no idea whether he would survive or die.”
Even though the malnourished child weighed only 16 pounds and was battling an infection, the joyful new father fell in love with his son the moment he laid eyes on him.
Even though it seemed that the odds were stacked against both of them, Jerry made a commitment to the little child right then and then that he would help him.
In his role as a father, Jerry would make any and all necessary sacrifices to ensure that his kid was provided with the variety of possibilities that were rightfully given to him throughout his life.
And Jerry kept his word on that commitment! His son, Jordan Windle, went on to be a member of the United States men’s diving team that competed in the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020.
He was the first person of Cambodian ancestry to achieve this milestone.
When Jordan was just seven years old, he started training to compete in the Olympics. After asking his father for permission to enroll in diving classes, he won his first junior national championship two years later. That was almost unheard of in the sport.
When Jordan was sixteen years old, he went back to Cambodia to compete in a diving competition. However, something unexpected took place while he was there.
He was met by a sea of media people who all knew who Jordan was thanks to the internet.
He is considered in Cambodia as somewhat of a national hero.
Jerry said, “When we got off the plane, I looked everywhere because I thought Angelina Jolie had just gotten there or something. We had a strong suspicion that someone famous, like the monarch of Cambodia or Angelina Jolie, was in the building.'”
Because Jordan is so proud of his heritage, he decided to get a tattoo of the Cambodian flag on his arm so that it would be visible while he is diving.
“People in Cambodia really think Jordan was here to bring light,” Jerry said on Good Morning America.
And Jerry is the loving dad, whether he is single or not, and helps that light shine even brighter.
“I’m even more fortunate that he is my son. I’m more fortunate as a human than I have ever been for him.”
Watch the video below to learn more about the amazing journey of this family.
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