Tina Bejarano was only 17 years old when she gave birth to a baby that her mother forbade her from keeping. She was told the following day that the baby was “sick” and had died, but now, 30 years later, a DNA test has reunited her with a son who is very much alive and living on the opposite side of the country.
Tina and her husband Eric Gardere have been celebrating the child’s birth every year since she gave birth, never fully able to come to terms with his loss.
Recently and out of the blue, she received an email from a man named Kristin. He was 29 and lived in New Jersey with his wife and child. Oh, and he happened to have discovered that Tina was his mother after taking a DNA test.
As it turns out, he was adopted five days after his birth and grew up in Las Vegas never knowing about where he came from.
“Looking at him just makes me want to cry,” Bejarano told ABC 7.
And while Gardere isn’t Kristin’s biological father, he still considers him a son as he and Bejarano got married just months after she gave birth and very much shared the grief of his loss together.
“We’ve been communicating with Kristin for a few months now. He calls me Dad, I call him Son, I text him every morning,” Gardere said.
Bejarano and Gardere haven’t had the opportunity to meet Kristin in person yet, but plan to do so in November, bringing both families together for the first time in what promises to be a very emotional and very heartwarming meeting.
The couple said they hoped their story would inspire others who’d gone through similar not to give up hope of finding their lost loved ones alive and well, no matter how many years have passed. Their experience is proof that it can happen.