Son stolen at delivery hugs Chilean mom for first time in 42 years

World Information

“I really like you very a lot,” Jimmy Lippert Thyden instructed his mom in Spanish as they embraced amid tears.

Jimmy Thyden as a child with cat Rusty.
Jimmy Thyden as a baby with cat Rusty. Jimmy Thyden through AP

WASHINGTON (AP) — “Hola, Mama.”

What looks as if an unremarkable greeting between mom and son was on this case something however.

Forty-two years in the past, hospital employees took Maria Angelica Gonzalez’ son from her arms proper after delivery and later instructed her he had died. Now, she was assembly him face-to-face at her dwelling in Valdivia, Chile.

“I really like you very a lot,” Jimmy Lippert Thyden instructed his mom in Spanish as they embraced amid tears.

“It knocked the wind out of me. … I used to be suffocated by the gravity of this second,” Thyden instructed The Related Press in a video name after the reunion. “How do you hug somebody in a manner that makes up for 42 years of hugs?”

Jimmy Thyden, left, holds hands with Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean birth mother.
Jimmy Thyden, left, holds palms with Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean delivery mom, as they meet in Valdivia, Chile on Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023, for the primary time. – Constanza Del Rio/Nos Buscamos through AP

His journey to seek out the delivery household he by no means knew started in April after he learn information tales about Chilean-born adoptees who had been reunited with their delivery family with the assistance of a Chilean nonprofit Nos Buscamos.

The group discovered that Thyden had been born prematurely at a hospital in Santiago, Chile’s capital, and positioned in an incubator. Gonzalez was instructed to go away the hospital, however when she returned to get her child, she was instructed he had died and his physique had been disposed of, in response to the case file, which Thyden summarized to the AP.

“The paperwork I’ve for my adoption tells me I’ve no residing family. And I discovered in the previous few months that I’ve a mama and I’ve 4 brothers and a sister,” Thyden mentioned within the interview from Ashburn, Virginia, the place he works as a legal protection legal professional representing “individuals who seem like me” who can not afford a lawyer.

He mentioned his was a case of “counterfeit adoption.”

Jimmy Thyden as a child.
Jimmy Thyden as a baby. – Jimmy Thyden through AP

Nos Buscamos estimates tens of 1000’s of infants have been taken from Chilean households within the Seventies and Eighties, based mostly on a report from the Investigations Police of Chile which reviewed the paper passports of Chilean youngsters who left the nation and by no means got here again.

“The true story was these children have been stolen from poor households, poor girls that didn’t know. They didn’t know easy methods to defend themselves,” mentioned Constanza del Rio, founder and director and Nos Buscamos.

The kid-trafficking coincided with many different human rights violations that passed off in the course of the 17-year reign of Gen. Augusto Pinochet, who on Sept. 11, 1973, led a Chilean coup to overthrow Marxist President Salvador Allende. Throughout the dictatorship, at the very least 3,095 individuals have been killed, in response to authorities figures, and tens of 1000’s extra have been tortured or jailed for political causes.

Jimmy Thyden, left, meets his brother Jonathan Gonzalez.
Jimmy Thyden, left, meets his brother Jonathan Gonzalez for the primary time in Valdivia, Chile on Aug. 17, 2023. – Constanza Del Rio/Nos Buscamos through AP
Jimmy Thyden, right, hugs his brother Pablo Leiva Gonzalez as Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean birth mother, left, looks on.
Jimmy Thyden, proper, hugs his brother Pablo Leiva Gonzalez as Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean delivery mom, left, seems on in Valdivia, Chile on Aug. 17, 2023. – Constanza Del Rio/Nos Buscamos through AP

Over the previous 9 years, Nos Buscamos has orchestrated greater than 450 reunions between adoptees and their delivery households, del Rio mentioned.

Different nonprofit organizations are doing comparable work, together with Hijos y Madres del Silencio in Chile and Connecting Roots in the USA.

Nos Buscamos has been partnering for 2 years with family tree platform MyHeritage, which offers free at-home DNA testing kits for distribution to Chilean adoptees and suspected victims of kid trafficking in Chile.

Thyden’s DNA check confirmed that he was 100% Chilean and matched him to a primary cousin who additionally makes use of the MyHeritage platform.

Jimmy Thyden, right, hugs Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean birth mother.
Jimmy Thyden, proper, hugs Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean delivery mom, as they meet for the primary time in Valdivia, Chile on Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023. – Constanza Del Rio/Nos Buscamos through AP

Thyden despatched the cousin his adoption papers, which included an handle for his delivery mom and a quite common title in Chile: Maria Angelica Gonzalez.

It seems his cousin had a Maria Angelica Gonzalez on their mom’s aspect and helped him make the connection.

However Gonzalez wouldn’t take his cellphone calls till he texted her a photograph of his spouse and daughters.

“Then simply the dam broke,” mentioned Thyden, who despatched extra images of the American household who adopted him, his time within the U.S. Marines, his marriage ceremony, and lots of different memorable life moments.

“I used to be attempting to bookend 42 years of a life taken from her. Taken from us each,” he mentioned.

He traveled to Chile together with his spouse, Johannah, and their two daughters, Ebba Pleasure, 8, and Betty Grace, 5, to satisfy his newly found household.

Jimmy Thyden poses for a photo with his wife Johannah, and their two daughters, Ebba Joy, 8, left, and Betty Grace, 5, center, at the Valdivia Airport in Valdivia, Chile.
Jimmy Thyden poses for a photograph together with his spouse Johannah, and their two daughters, Ebba Pleasure, 8, left, and Betty Grace, 5, heart, on the Valdivia Airport in Valdivia, Chile. – Constanza Del Rio/Nos Buscamos through AP

Moving into his mom’s dwelling, Thyden was greeted with 42 colourful balloons, each signifying a yr of misplaced time together with his Chilean household.

“There’s an empowerment in popping these balloons, empowerment in being there with your loved ones to take stock of all that was misplaced,” he mentioned.

Thyden recollects his delivery mom’s response to listening to from him: “Mijo (son) you don’t have any concept the oceans I’ve cried for you. What number of nights I’ve laid awake praying that God let me reside lengthy sufficient to be taught what occurred to you.”

Gonzalez declined to be interviewed for this story.

Thyden, alongside together with his spouse and daughters visited the Santiago zoo the place his American household first took him after the adoption. This time their tour information was his organic sister.

Again at Gonzalez’ dwelling, Thyden realized that he and his mom share a love of cooking.

“My palms are in the identical dough as my mama,” he mentioned as they made fried empanadas collectively. He pledged to maintain utilizing the household recipe to remain linked together with his household and his tradition.

Jimmy Thyden as a child sitting in a red chair.
Jimmy Thyden as a baby. – Jimmy Thyden through AP

Thyden mentioned his adoptive dad and mom are supportive of his journey to reunite together with his misplaced family, however have been “unwitting victims” of a far-reaching unlawful adoption community and are wrestling with the realities of the state of affairs.

“My dad and mom needed a household however they by no means needed it like this,” he mentioned. “Not on the extortion of one other, the robbing of one other.”

By way of a spokesperson, his dad and mom declined remark.

Whereas Thyden was efficiently reunited together with his delivery household, he acknowledges that reunification may not go as nicely for different adoptees.

“It might have been a a lot worse story,” he mentioned. “There are individuals who discover out some actually unlucky particulars about their origin.”

Whereas in Chile, Thyden and del Rio met with one among seven investigators working to handle 1000’s of counterfeit adoption instances like his personal.

“We don’t need cash, we simply need the human recognition that this horrible factor occurred in Chile and the compromise that this isn’t going to proceed occurring sooner or later,” del Rio mentioned. “We are attempting to make a distinction. Not solely with Jimmy and his household however we need to do it, the change, within the nation.”

Jimmy Thyden, right, sits with Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean birth mother.
Jimmy Thyden, proper, sits with Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his Chilean delivery mom, as they meet for the primary time in Valdivia, Chile on Aug. 17, 2023. – Constanza Del Rio/Nos Buscamos through AP

Thyden additionally met with Juan Gabriel Valdes, the Chilean ambassador to the USA, to hunt authorities recognition of the pervasiveness of the adoption scheme.

He mentioned there was no mechanism, monetary or in any other case, to help Chilean adoptees of their efforts to go to their dwelling nation. He mentioned he bought a truck to pay for his household’s aircraft tickets and different bills.

“Individuals want to have the ability to determine … what their title goes to be, the place their citizenship goes to be. They need to have entry to each,” he mentioned. “They need to have all of the rights and privileges of a Chilean citizen as a result of this can be a factor that occurred to them, not that they selected.”

The Chilean Embassy in Washington didn’t return a request for remark.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NLpqHfOLi2w


Posted

in

by