August 23, 2008
Why Troy Does What He Does
I never intended to spend my life reuniting families. It happened by chance (if there is such a thing) when I met a guy (I'll call him "Tom"), who had been adopted and was successful in locating his biological family. Having grown up watching my own mother search (unsuccessfully) for her own biological family, I asked Tom if he could help me help my mom. He agreed, so one Saturday morning, I gathered up everything my mother had ever accumulated in her search efforts and spread it out on a table for Tom to review. He and I worked through the material for five hours, making calls, sending faxes and suddenly...it was done. He slid a small scrap of paper across the table to me and said, "This is your mom's mother's phone number." My heart began to pound as I realized what was about to transpire.
I picked up the phone and called my mom to tell her I had found her mother. As I told her, I could hear her breathing get more rapid, and suddenly she began to weep. She wept in a way I've never heard her do in all my life. It moved me — it touched me at the center of my core.
At that moment, I turned to Tom and said, "There must be thousands, maybe millions of people who are desperately seeking a missing loved one!" At that instant, I knew what I would spend the rest of my life doing. Reuniting families became my life’s work that Saturday afternoon in 1990, and 18 years and more than 40,000 reunions later, I continue to be as excited about reuniting people as I was that very first time.
I believe I have one of the best jobs in the world — second only maybe to Santa Claus! As long as people continue to seek loved ones, I will be helping people find peace by finding their missing pieces.
— Troy Dunn