Man honored for fostering teens for more than 40 years in Los Angeles County

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A foster father of more than 50 children was honored Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. (KABC)

A foster father of more than 50 children was honored Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

Randall Scarff dedicated his life to children who need a home. Now, at the age of 71, he's received a formal thank you for helping so many of those kids.

"The foster children he brings in are teenagers, which is very difficult many times, but he's been out there to help and provide them a foundation so that they're going to be responsible leaders," Supervisor Mike Antonovich said.

It started nearly four decades ago, when Scarff adopted a 13-year-old boy named Larry. He said the pre-teen was incredibly easy to deal with because he was on overall good kid.

But he admits there's been some serious challenges along the way.

"I've had kids that were gang involved. I've had three kids that were killed. I've had one suicide. I've had a couple of kids end up in prison," he said.

Still, Scarff kept going and adopted seven children over the years. Now, he fosters five teens and treasures the milestones he's watched many reach. He said his oldest son always thanks him for being a positive impact in his life.

Scarff and county officials urge more people to step up and provide a home for the thousands of children in foster care these days.

"If you have the time and the patience and the sense of humor - you've got to have a sense of humor - do it," he said.

If you would like more information on becoming a foster parent, you may call (888) 811-1121.

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