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German adoptee returns Vietnam to locate Vietnamese mother

17:16 | 21/08/2020

It did not take Fabian Schreck long to locate his biological mother upon his returning to Vietnam to find his long-lost mother.

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(Video: VNE)

Schreck is 21 years old and has been living in Germany with his adopted parents since his infanthood. As a litlte boy, Schreck already knew he was an adoptee, yet, he only asked his parents about his roots two years ago. His mother then gave him a box full of Vietnamese documents on the occasion.

Schreck's birth certificate states his name is Luu Phuoc Thanh, born on June 8, 1999, at Saigon's Tu Du Hospital. Both the names of his mother and father were blacked out.

"I am curious about my blood parents, who they are, whether they are alive and well," Schreck said.

After his graduation from high school in 2019, the 21-year-old decided to fly to Ho Chi Minh City, southern Vietnam to find his relatives.

On January 30, 2020, he arrived in Ho Chi Minh City where he spent three days in Go Vap District fruitlessly searching for information about his Vietnamese family.

Later, he grew even more despondent during a visit to the Child Protection Center in Go Vap, his former home.

"It took me about 30 minutes to react to the information," Schreck recalled.

german adoptee returns vietnam to locate vietnamese mother
Fabian Schreck's birth name is Luu Phuoc Thanh (Photo: VNE)

The next day, he called on the people's committee of Go Vap's Ward 4 for help locating the address, only to be told it would take about a week.

Waiting at a nearby coffee shop, he got a text within an hour stating: "Hey, we have found your grandmother's address."

Equipped with both address and phone number, Schreck started sourcing an interpreter but received another message confirming his mother too had been located.

Tu Chi Tien, the officer helping Schreck connect with his blood family, did not expect to find the grandmother after only five phone calls.

At 7 p.m. the same day, he received a call from overseas. On the other end of the line, the tearful mother thanked him for his help in finding her son.

"During the past two decades, she had returned to Vietnam annually to search for her child. She had trouble sleeping, not knowing whether he was dead or alive," Tien said.

As a young mother, adverse circumstances had forced her to place the child in the care of acquaintances, who to her dismay, gave him away.

Traumatized, the medical student decided to empower herself through education to one day find her missing son. Today, the successful mother lives abroad with her current husband and children.

german adoptee returns vietnam to locate vietnamese mother
Schreck visited Ha Long Bay (Photo courtesy of Schreck/ via VNE)
german adoptee returns vietnam to locate vietnamese mother
Two-month-old Schreck and his German father. Photo courtesy of Fabian (Photo: VNE)
german adoptee returns vietnam to locate vietnamese mother
Two-month-old Schreck and his German father. Photo courtesy of Fabian (Photo: VNE)

Tien subsequently created a chat group for the mother and Fabian to communicate. Nervous, the boy opened Facebook and saw a friend request, including a written message.

"It was my blood mother. I was overwhelmed, feeling unprepared for such a conversation. My feelings were hard to describe, I was both happy and confused," he recalled.

Since then, he has talked with his mother, her children and husband every day. Due to Covid-19 travel restrictions, the mother and son have yet to physically reunite.

Having obtained such quick results, a suspicious Schreck decided to complete a DNA test. In early June, he visited his supposed grandmother's house in Thanh Hoa. Recalling the day, his aunt said that when her husband had told her about a young man looking for her, she immediately went to see him.

"It was my nephew. His face was similar to my older sister's," she said.

After meeting his aunt, uncle and cousins at their home, Schreck grew more relaxed.

"When the DNA results confirmed they were indeed my relatives, I was totally thrilled," he said.

With his two-month trip prolonged by the advent of COVID-19, the boy has had ample time to get to know his family, their local community, and his country of birth.

Returning to Germany on July 24, Schreck hopes to soon reunite with his blood mother.

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