A Grandmother's Love

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A Grandmother's Love

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Posted: 3/3/2010
Note: Names, Identifying informaiton and details may have been altered to protect personal identities.

My mother is 83 years old, and is one of the kindest people I have ever met. She has raised 10 children and now has 27 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren. Throughout her life, she has loved others unconditionally, supporting every member of her family no matter what. When life has taken us down unexpected roads, she has always been there, standing by us with support and compassion even through our blunders and mistakes. She celebrates with us when we achieve our goals, and even for the grandchildren she makes a point to attend soccer games, water polo matches, dance recitals, and graduation ceremonies. She makes sure she has special time with each grandchild and even sets aside money for an inheritance for each of us, the grandkids getting theirs when they turn 21.

One of her sons died in an accident at the age of 39. Right before his death, he was involved in a short-lived relationship and fathered a son. My brother's name was Kevin and though he passed away, we have not forgotten that his relationship blessed us with another family member. My nephew's name is Christopher Michael and he does not know that he has a wonderful grandmother. One of his cousins says that his grandmother personifies the true meaning of "grandma." She has not forgotten Christopher, but has continued setting aside a little something for him as each birthday and Christmas passes. She lost a child but knows that somewhere she could see her son's smile again in the smile of a grandson she has never met, but has always loved.

Recently, mother and I were enjoying lunch together when out of the blue she brought up Christopher in conversation. She said, "Sandi, before I die I have to meet that young man and tell him I love him, and that I've never forgotten about him. Would you help me find him?" Her request was utterly unexpected, but I could see her sincerity shining through her tears, and I promised her that I would find him.

The next day, I did what anyone would do--I conducted an internet search for Christopher. It came back with thousands and thousands of hits and I quickly realized that finding him was not something I could do on my own. My next search was for private investigation companies, and voila! I found Search Quest America. Through several clicks of the mouse, I ended up at this very website and found myself engrossed in the stories of people just like us who were also searching for loved ones. I quickly saw that not every story had a happy ending, and discussed that reality with Mother before proceeding with the case.

When we made the decision to go forward, our case was assigned to Julie Jones. She first called to introduce herself and get more information on January 3, 2010. I'll never forget that day because in the morning we gave her all the information we had, including what we thought to be Christopher's mother's name. Then in the afternoon, Julie emailed us with a photograph of Christopher--It was from Facebook of all places! Unfortunately all of the most recent phone numbers and addresses on record were outdated, so the best option was for Julie to send him a message on Facebook. We held our breaths and waited for a response. Sure enough, the next day Chris called Julie, overjoyed that someone was looking for him after all this time.
Chris said he didn't know his dad had died until he was about 14 years old. He always wanted to look for us, but found himself in the same situation we did, not knowing where to look or who to trust to find the answers.

Incredibly enough, he grew up within 20 miles of our hometown his entire life! We must have crossed paths with him in the grocery store or at sporting events. In fact, he graduated from the same high school as his cousins, just about 5 years apart. We must have had a hundred opportunities to cross paths with him over the years, but never connected until now.

Right now, Chris is stationed in North Carolina at Camp LeJuene and we are so proud to learn that he has been to the war zone overseas and recently offered to go again at the end of March. Unfortunately he just took leave and will not have the opportunity to come see us until he saves up some time, but we have begun corresponding over the phone and through email, getting to know each other slowly and eagerly anticipating the opportunity to meet in person. Mother is so thrilled to finally know what happened to her long lost grandson, and it means the world to Chris to know that he has always been loved and thought about on every holiday and throughout the year. We can't say enough positive things about Search Quest America--everyone we dealt with took a personal interest in our story and we felt their compassion from the very first phone call. Thank you so much to each of you, may God bless you in your endeavors and smile upon you as he has smiled upon each member of our family. Much love, Sandi.

(Written by Mica Burton on Sandi's behalf.)

Client ID# 265506
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