Family Of 7 'Adopts' Their 82-Year-Old Widowed Neighbor And Makes Him Their 'Honorary Grandpa'

He earned a place in their family after showing them kindness when they moved into their new neighborhood.

family adopts 82-year-old neighbor and makes him honorary grandpa Brett Sayles / Pexels

A family of seven who moved into their new home in Pawtucket, Rhode Island last year didn't hesitate to welcome their elderly neighbor into their family.

Sharaine Caraballo, 32, along with her husband Wilson, 42, and their five kids had been hesitant to move to a new area in Rhode Island and were nervous about making a good first impression on their neighbors. Little did they know that one neighbor in particular would soon become a part of their family.


The family 'adopted' their elderly widowed neighbor after he started helping them around their new house.

The Caraballo family had moved to Rhode Island in March 2022 and were a bit on edge about how their family would be welcomed into their new neighborhood. 

RELATED: A Little Boy Opened A Lemonade Stand To Raise Money To 'See The World' Before He Loses His Vision Entirely


"Our biggest fear moving into a new neighborhood was, 'What if our neighbors don't like us?' What if, because we have a lot of kids, they make a lot of noise and we come from a big family, so what if there's any conflict with the neighbors?" Sharaine told SWNS, via USA Today. "We're the only Black family in our neighborhood."

However, her fear about her family being isolated from the rest of the neighbors quickly dissipated after meeting 82-year-old Paul Callahan, who lived across the street from the Caraballo family. Sharaine and Wilson first met Callahan shortly after arriving at their new house.

The 82-year-old who had lost his wife six months before Sharaine and her family moved to Rhode Island, arrived at their house with a toolbox and an offer to help with any housework that needed to get done.

"He was coming over with tools. He’d bring screwdrivers and teach Wilson how to fix up the garage, and Wilson followed all his advice,” Sharaine recalled. It wasn't long before their relationship evolved from just being neighbors to Callahan earning a spot in their big family.


RELATED: An Anthropologist Was Taught The Emotional Lesson Of 'Ubuntu' From Kids In A South African Tribe — And It's Something American Kids Should Learn, Too

The Caraballo family didn't hesitate to make Callahan their 'honorary grandpa.'

It wasn't long before the family of seven and Callahan started spending more and more time together. After some time, Callahan earned the title of being their "honorary grandpa."

"The kids run up to him like that's their grandfather," Sharaine explained. "Paul is definitely a family member. He's no longer considered a neighbor."

Not only does Callahan entertain their children and tell stories about his life, but he also spends time at their house for cookouts, dinners, and other activities. Callahan has no regrets about going up to the Caraballo family on their first day and striking up a conversation, especially now that it's led to a beautiful friendship.


"You get many chances to talk to people. If you don't take a chance, you may miss a friend," Callahan pointed out. "It doesn't hurt to be nice. That's the other thing, it costs you nothing, but a lot of times, you get a better return."

The Caraballo family's decision to embrace Paul Callahan accentuates the idea that familial bonds are not solely determined by blood relations, but by the authenticity, understanding, and love that individuals share. Found family can often be a beacon of light, reminding us of the extraordinary potential that exists when we open our hearts to those who choose to walk the journey of life beside us.

RELATED: A Soldier Spots Two Hungry & Cold Kids At Taco Bell Trying To Raise Money For Their Church & His Act Of Compassion Is Caught On Camera


Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.