Some Foster Kids That Have Gone On To Become Famous

Foster kids often face many tough situations in both their childhood and as an adult. Even though the statistics aren’t good, it is still possible for foster kids to succeed. Many foster kids have gone on to be successful adults and live to do great things. Some have even become famous, even considered one of the best in the career they chose. Even though being a foster kid is extremely hard, it’s important to know that it isn’t something that has to hold you back. Here are some famous former foster kids that have gone on to do big things.

Babe Ruth

George “Babe” Ruth was placed into foster care at the age of 7. As a kid he found baseball as a positive outlet. Started being looked at by major league teams in his teens and as we all know became pretty good. He went from being a foster kid to becoming one of the greatest and most famous baseball players of all time.


At the age of two Cher was placed in foster care when her mother became too ill to take care of her. Cher was able to return home, but her grandparents were a major part of her upbringing while her mother was struggling. She married Sonny at 18 and they started making hit songs in the 60’s. In 1999, Cher recorded a number one album making her the oldest female to hit the number 1 spot.

Alonzo Mourning

Alonzo Mourning was placed in the foster home of a family friend after a fallout with his parents after their divorce. “Zo” was 12 when he went to his new home and was already 6 foot tall. Mourning practiced non stop after he found the sport of basketball. He excelled in college and went on to win an NBA championship with the Miami Heat.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs was born in a time when mothers that had babies out of wedlock were looked down upon. He was soon adopted by a couple after his birth. Steve was very bright, but got into a lot of trouble, even getting expelled from school. Jobs was so smart though, he was able to skip a couple of grades. As a kid, he started to become very interested in electronics. Later he began assembling computers in his garage and was soon was changing the computer world. He was the co-founder and former CEO of Apple Computer. Steve Jobs went from foster kids to leading the company that created the iPhone.

John Lennon

John Lennon was a foster child that grew up to help form one of the greatest rock groups of all time “The Beatles”. They are the only group in history to have twenty songs to reach number one. John had a rough childhood and was placed with other family by the state. Music became a large part of his life as a teen. He was also a good artist but wasn’t too good with school. He formed a band and by 1962 was in the Beatles.

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe was placed in an orphanage after her mother was declared legally insane. She spent two years in the orphanage and the next four with a family friend. Marilyn had a tough childhood and struggled with not knowing her father. Marilyn Monroe lived to become one of the most famous movie stars of all time. To this day she is still beloved for her beauty and is idolized by many stars and fans.

Willie Nelson

At the age of five Willie Nelson and his sister were left with his grandparents by his mother. His dad was always away on work and his mother couldn’t afford to take care of the kids. His grandparents taught them work ethic and treated them with the love they needed. Willie learned music from them as well. He had a short stint in the Air Force and continued to work on his music. In 1961 he landed a recording contract. Willie’s fan base grew and he has made many albums, done several tours and has also appeared in many movies and TV shows. He’s gone from foster kid to music icon.

Dave Peltzer

Dave Pelzer lived a rough life as a child. You might have read about it in the book “A Child Called It”. As a child, Dave was considered a “slave” by his mother. She would play cruel games that nearly left him dead. At age 12 the school notified DFS. He went through several foster homes and continued to have trouble with the effects of his childhood. After leaving foster care he joined the military where he excelled. He has received many awards throughout his life and was even nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for his first book.

Malcom X

Malcolm Little was born in a time of severe racism. His father was an activist and died a brutal death when Malcolm and his siblings were young. After her husband’s death, his mother had a nervous breakdown and was committed, sending the kids to different foster homes. Malcolm was a smart kid, at the top of his middle school class, but then dropped out due to racism. He was later arrested for several crimes and converted to Islam while serving his time. Malcolm now going by  Malcolm X became a minister to spread the word. During his journey, he found comfort with other races through religion and started to preach the coming together of blacks and whites. Sadly he was gunned down by members of a group that opposed his ideas.

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20 Responses to Some Foster Kids That Have Gone On To Become Famous

  1. Mary says:

    VERY Interesting.

  2. Aunt Sarah says:

    hmmmm not the role models I was looking to quote

  3. Imafoster says:

    The idea behind this post wasn’t really about good role models to quote. I was just trying to relay the fact that just because your from a foster care background doesn’t mean your insignificant or cant achieve your highest dream. These are people who’s lives were rough but were able to go on to become athletes, singers, movie stars, and so on. Not all of these people are the best role models to quote BUT some like Dave Pelzer, Alonzo Mourning, and Steve Jobs have done great things and I believe could be good role models and have several insightful quotes.

  4. As a foster child in multiple placements, I’d say the success of such examples comes not thanks to being foster children, but in spite of it. Some of the foster families were actual family, some strangers; it’s all a very random, unskilled, uneducated “system” and the success of these examples is equally random. That’s the real point, I think: if anyone makes it, it’s not due to that system, but in spite of it. The foster care system is a great secret debacle, a gaping disorganized hole in the welfare net that has been ignored forever. The fact that a beautiful actress or great athlete made it can not therefore be credited to it; but any straw a kid can grasp to help him or herself climb out of their situation is always welcome.

    • R.Michael Corral says:

      Dear writer.
      I have to say that I am intrigued by your insight, courage and tenacity at carving out a life for yourself that has elevated you to the point of having something very valuable to share. As the author of the upcoming book “Parenting Outside of the Box / An Intrinsic Art”, I would be honored to interview you for content in my book. If you are interested I can be reached at to set an interview appointement. I can also be found on Linkedin as R. Michael Corral MPA.Please identify yourself as the commenting author of “Just Trying to Find a Bridge”. Best of wishes to you.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I am very happy to know these great personality was foster children and they are truly an inspiration to everyone to be blessed by. I myself am a foster parent of a number of children. I love providing foster care to children and be a blessing to children. My desire one day is to become the owner of a group home for children, expecially children K to 12. I myself wrote an awesome, life-changing and inspirational book for many to be inspired by. The book is called Parenting and Nurturing Foster children. You can go to and purchase the paperback copy or search Paul Caprietta kindle book for an Ebook..

  6. Jamie says:

    Allen Pineda (known as from the Black Eyed Peas was aslo adopted from the Philippines at age 14. He is also legally blind in both eyes.,,20460263,00.html

  7. Anonymous says:

    You can prosper through adversity. I grew up foster home to foster home and now earn a 6 figure salarie at age 26. It’s important to keep in mind that you will meet someone one day and you are loved. Hold your friends close.

  8. Amaru says:

    Spelling error throwing me off… “I’m a was a foster kid and now I’m a foster parent.”

  9. Anonymous says:

    that was good information

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  12. LadyLisa says:

    Hello there.
    I too was a ward of the state. I was emancipated at 18. Thanks for sharing the various individuals who have made it; in spite of the system. Only those of us who have experienced this type of lifestyle can truly understand it. With all the negative distraction in life, it takes a strong individual to persevere. One must be tenacious. One must be determined. One must have faith…that this too shall pass. I believe that those of us who have had challenges in our lives are here to serve a greater purpose. I believe that we ought to share our stories to inspire and motivate others to never give up and that they must follow their dreams. Looking back now, I am so glad that God gave me the life that I had because due to me being “tested”, I can now give a “testimony”.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I too grew up in several foster homes and am a surviver of a horrific childhood what a great book this would make should get a few of us together what it was like what happened and what its like now best regards

  14. S says:

    I am so inspired by the commenters on this page. I “fostered” my 15yo cousin when I was in my twenties. I also worked with the Guardian Ad Litem’s office for several years before raising a family of my own. My husband and I want desperately to create resources for kids in the foster system. I am working on setting up a not for profit right now to connect foster kids with mentors. I would love to connect & hear stories of what you feel helped you to succeed academically, career wise. Did you find a mentor along the way? How big of a role did they play? How would your experience be different if you had had a mentor to guide you through college or getting started in a career? Where do you think you’d be if you hadn’t had a mentor? Would you mentor a foster kid?
    If you’re interested in sharing thoughts, please contact me: rebeccasymes @ gmail. com and put “foster mentor” in the subject of the email. I’d love to hear from anyone who wants to share their experiences (I will only use names with permission) to help get our program off the ground. Thanks to you all. Best wishes.

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