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Moment emotional son stolen at birth hugs biological mother for first time in 42 years

By Vassia BarbaUS News Reporter

09:23, 28 Aug 2023 UPDATED17:00, 28 AUG 2023

Jimmy Lippert Thyden was emotionally reunited with his birth mother in Chile, with help from the nonprofit Nos Buscamos and his own determined quest after being separated for 42 years

A man who had been kidnapped as a baby and adopted met his biological mother for the very first time.

Jimmy Lippert Thyden, a US attorney, was reunited with his birth mother, Maria Angelica Gonzalez, in Valdivia, Chile. The reunion was facilitated by the Chilean nonprofit organisation Nos Buscamos, which has been dedicated to reuniting adoptees with their birth families. Thyden spent 42 years unaware of his true origins and family.

The story dates back to Thyden's birth in Santiago, Chile, where he was born prematurely and placed in an incubator. Hospital workers reportedly informed his birth mother, Gonzalez, that her newborn had passed away. Devastated, Gonzalez left the hospital, not knowing that her son was alive.

DNA testing confirmed Thyden's Chilean heritage and connected him to a first cousin (


However, decades later, Thyden's decision to uncover his true identity led him on a journey of discovery. In April, he came across news articles detailing reunions between Chilean-born adoptees and their birth families, thanks to the efforts of Nos Buscamos. Encouraged by these stories, Thyden decided to explore his own history.

Through the help of Nos Buscamos and the genealogy platform MyHeritage, Thyden's DNA test confirmed his Chilean heritage and linked him to a first cousin who was also using the platform. This cousin's connection eventually led Thyden to his birth mother, Maria Angelica Gonzalez.

Jimmy, right, hugs his brother Pablo ( Image:AP)

Their emotional reunion in Valdivia was a moment filled with tears, hugs, and deep emotions. Thyden struggled to find words to express the overwhelming feeling of meeting his birth mother after four decades of separation.

Thyden said, "I love you very much," as he embraced his mother amid tears. He later said, "It knocked the wind out of me. ... I was suffocated by the gravity of this moment," during a video call after the reunion.

Thyden's cousin helped establish contact with Maria Angelica Gonzalez, his birth mother (


Thyden's story sheds light on a dark period in Chile's history. It is estimated that thousands of babies were taken from their families in Chile during the 1970s and 1980s, coinciding with the oppressive regime of General Augusto Pinochet. This act of child trafficking was just one among many human rights violations during that era.

Nos Buscamos has been instrumental in reuniting adoptees with their birth families, orchestrating over 450 reunions in the past nine years. Other organizations like Hijos y Madres del Silencio in Chile and Connecting Roots in the United States are also involved in similar work.

Jimmy Lippert Thyden's long journey to find his birth mother began after reading news stories ( Image:AP)

In Chile, Thyden met with officials, including the Chilean ambassador to the United States, in an effort to raise awareness about the pervasiveness of the adoption scheme and advocate for change.

In the end, Thyden's story is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the power of love and connection to bridge decades of separation. It serves as an inspiration to others who may be searching for their own roots and history.

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