Colorado residents may be interested to hear about a story that was 35 years in the making. On Oct. 30, the U.S. Border Patrol arrested a man that they believed to illegally crossing the border from Mexico. The man, however, claimed that he was born in Chicago and was therefore a U.S. citizen. He asked Border Patrol officials to assist in locating his mother and his U.S. birth certificate.
In November, the man’s 60-year-old mother was discovered living in Wisconsin. She and the boy’s father separated when the child was two years old. The father picked their son up for a routine visit one day and never returned. She was later informed that he had taken the child to a one-month visit to see his grandparents. That month became decades, as the child was never returned. The father told the son that his mother had abandoned him, and he left him in Mexico with the boy’s paternal grandparents. He then returned to Chicago alone. The couple later obtained a divorce, but child custody was not decided at that time. Therefore, police could not help locate the child.
The mother attempted to write to the grandparents’ home, but her letters were ignored. Now, she will travel to San Diego to see her son for the first time in 35 years. The reunion is made more poignant by the fact that, after decades in Mexico, the son now speaks only Spanish. The American mother speaks only English.
An attorney may be able to help other parents avoid the scenario mentioned above by seeking to obtain a child custody order. That way, if either parent disappears with the child, law enforcement may be able to help.
Source: CNN, “Long-lost son, 37, to finally see mother in San Diego after 35 years abroad“, Michael Martinez. Gonzalo Alvarado and Casey Wian, November 23, 2013