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Midday Sunday With Tony Valdez

Adoption: A Man's Journey To Find His Biological Parents

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Katheryn Deprill, searching for birth family. Katheryn Deprill, searching for birth family.
Patrick with his biological mother, Susan. Patrick with his biological mother, Susan.
Patrick with his biological father, Mike. Patrick with his biological father, Mike.

Katheryn Deprill of Pennsylvania always wondered who her biological parents were.  Recently, at the age of 27, with three children of her own, Deprill realized that Facebook might be a way to find them.  She posted a photo of herself, holding a sign which read "Looking for my birth mother.  She gave birth to me September 15, 1986.  She abandoned me in the Burger King bathroom only hours old... please help me find her by sharing my post.  Maybe she will see this.  Thank you."

Deprill's story has gone viral but she has not yet found her birth mother.

On Midday Sunday, we tell the story of Patrick O'Brien, who's birth name was Michael Huellewig. He's FOX 11's award winning Digital Director, and he started his search in September 2013. Within a couple months he narrowed down the search for his mother, sent her a certified letter, and the rest is history.

Leading up to Patrick meeting his biological mother for the very first time, he told his story of the search on his Twitter account @obrienmedia using the hashtag #POBjourney, where many of his friends and family watched his search unfold one tweet at a time, leading up to the real-time moment he knocked on his mother's door.  A month later, he did the same thing on Twitter for his father--this time his mother was clued in on his tweeting and cheered for him along the way.

You can follow both journeys through photos and tweets using Storify at http://www.storify/obrienmedia.  The story was so popular during the holidays, Storify featured his journey on their home page for several days.

He also wrote a song during his search, called "Journey" which you can hear on SoundCloud at https://soundcloud.com/obrienmedia/the-journey.


It's been a very positive experience for Patrick. He thanks his adopted brother for inspiring him to search, he thanks his adopted mother and father for raising him to be the best he can be, and he looks forward to learning more about himself every day through his biological mother, father and family.

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