ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – It was a bittersweet day in Albany County Family Court for the adoption of the sisters of Kenneth White, the 5-year-old who was killed by his cousin and left in a snow bank in 2014.

After nearly five years, there’s a sense of finality to a tragic case that left the Capital Region heartbroken. Courtrooms aren’t necessarily known as a place for celebration, but it was all smiles as sisters Christine and Cheyenne were adopted by Linda Dunn, who has been a mother to them since the tragic death of their brother.

It’s thanks to Elaine and Thomas Person that Dunn decided to become a foster mom in the first place.

“We were foster parents for 36 years and we have 20 kids that we consider ours,” said Elaine.

The Persons have become close with the girls and have high hopes for their futures.

“I think that they will thrive, I think they that will be extremely happy they already are,” she said.

Supporters packed the courtroom, including members of the ever-present Kenneth’s Army.

“I cried, it was emotional, it was wonderful to see,” said Claire Ansbro-Ingalls. She has devoted a big part of her life to fighting for justice for Kenny and keeping the girls safe. She says, thanks to Dunn, now they are.   

“They were not easy, but she struggled through it and maintained it and they are loved more than you could ever imagine,” said Ansbro-Ingalls.

The girls got a special ride from Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple.

“This is one of those cases where their first ride in the police car was not as happy and hopefully they’ll remember this second ride a little better,” he said.

It was a case that rocked the sheriff to his core. His thoughts often turn to that cold December day and the face of an innocent little boy.

“He was just the cutest little kid and he was just violently taken from us,” said Apple.

But now it’s time to look ahead. Family and friends gathered at a local diner for breakfast to celebrate new beginnings.

“They’re obviously never going to forget their brother but they can have a stable home, a stable environment, and they can live a healthy life,” said Apple.