Back Cover Blurb

I was born in Crittenton General Hospital in Detroit, one of the nation’s largest hospitals created to serve unwed mothers and their infants and later a major health center for delivering infants relinquished for adoption. (Photo courtesy of the National Crittenton Foundation)

Born in Detroit at one of the nation’s largest maternity hospitals that promoted adoption among non-related parents and infants, Rudy Owens was relinquished at three weeks by his birth mother in 1965. Society and public health records keepers expected him to accept a new and harmful notion that an adoptee should never know his true identity and biological family. Instead, Owens overcame Michigan’s discriminatory legal barriers and found his birth family and kin on both sides of his family when he was 24. His journey during the next nearly three decades took him from Detroit to San Diego to the Midwest, where he learned about his past, met his genetic kin, and finally reclaimed his documents state vital records keepers vowed to hide from him until the day he died. On his hero’s quest, Owens overcame the biased tactics of unhelpful vital records guardians and stereotypes by his own birth family who feared his presence. By rising above those who denied him equality under the law and equal rights because he was born a bastard, he reclaimed the power of that derogatory word. He demonstrated that searching for one’s origins and asking, “Who am I,” are the most natural acts a human will ever take.