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Special Assignment: Black Market Babies?

Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry

How much does it cost to use the registry? (Source)

  • Registration: No Fee
  • Non-Identifying Summary: $35
  • Non-Identifying Summary for Adoptive Parent: No Fee
  • Search: $300

What if I don't want to be contacted by the party searching for me? (Source)

"The Reunion Registry cannot release identifying information without written consent of the person being sought or a court order. If you want to protect your right to privacy, you must file an Affidavit of Non-Disclosure with the Adoption Reunion Registry. If there is a court hearing, you may be contacted if you have not filed this affidavit."

Free In-Depth Consultation

The Reunion Registry is now offering In-Depth Individual Consultation Services, either in person or on the phone, to:

  • Help prepare you for the wide range of possibilities once you decide to move forward with your search.
  • Help you sort through various issues you may be facing in your reunion.

Click here for more information.

Click here to contact the GA Adoption Reunion Registry.

News 12 at 11 o'clock / Thursday, September 23, 2010

AUGUSTA---For more than a year now, News 12 has been investigating an alleged black market for babies in Augusta. Our stories aren't just uncovering the past. They're giving people futures with family they never thought they'd find.

Since airing our first story, News 12 has received hundreds of phone calls from all over the country. Two of those calls were from Augusta women. One was looking for her mother; the other was looking for her daughter. After some detective work, I realized they were looking for each other.

"I've been busy as a beaver today," Faye Stringfellow laughs. "I've shampooed my carpet, bedroom, living room. Mopped my bathroom. I've been so busy." Faye is preparing her house, and she's preparing food. But her heart? That's been ready to meet her child for years. She says she's waited ever since she willingly gave her daughter up for adoption. "I didn't know it was a girl. They never let me know what she was. "

As fate would have it, Faye's daughter only lives five minutes away. All this time, she's been so close, but so far.

Faye is standing on her front porch when Valerie Robinson pulls up. It's emotional for both of them to see each other. Immediately, they recognize some physical similarities. They both wear glasses. They are both roughly about the same height. Neither one stands five feet tall. After a hug and some deep breaths, Faye and Valerie venture inside. They have a lot of celebrating to do. They also have a lot of catching up to do, starting with how Valerie ended up with her adopted family.

"I really didn't think this was going to happen," confesses Valerie. "Because I had been told stories. So many stories."

Then, she saw our stories.

News 12 has investigated case after case of questionable adoptions. Some claim they were sold. Some claim their babies were stolen. Most of these cases seem to have one thing in common: Richmond County juvenile court officer Elizabeth Hamilton, known as "Bee".

Valerie was watching and wondering. Could Bee Hamilton have taken her and sold her? She contacted News 12, and we went to work. We put her in touch with the Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry.

Meanwhile, Faye was watching News 12 too, and when she got a packet in the mail from the registry, she picked up the phone. Faye wanted to know about the paperwork they sent her. As I was answering her questions, I couldn't help but think of Valerie. Could this be her mom? I had a feeling she was, so I did some digging...and my feeling was right.

Just a few days after we put them in touch, they met for the first time. "I tell ya. I'm so happy to see you," Faye said as she looked at Valerie. "I'm glad you're ok."

Valerie says the Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry confirmed they are mother and daughter. Their search has ended, but this is a new beginning. "When I saw Faye, I was - I knew. it was undescribeable. It was awesome," she said.

Even meeting Faye and knowing Faye gave her up for adoption, Valerie still has questions, the answers to which she thinks Bee took to her grave. Valerie was adopted twice. She might never know what happened and how, but that's okay. "It's nice to have a connection with someone rather than being all alone."

Faye is happy to be connected too. "Well, she's got a smile like me, but I think my nose is bigger than hers," she laughs. "But it don't matter really." All that matters to Faye is that "I'm her mother, and that's the way it's going be the rest of my life."

Faye and Valerie wanted to tell their story and wanted to share their first meeting in hopes they will be able to reunite another family out there. Who knows? It seems every time we air one of these stories, lives change for the better.

This the second mother and daughter we've reunited. After we started investigating Bee Hamilton, the Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry got busier. Investigators there will probably have even more calls now. News 12 has given their contact information to hundreds of people already.

Basically, the Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry is a state agency that finds families, and they're good at what they do. There is a $300 fee for their services, but they don't want to turn anyone away, so they will work with you on the price.

Valerie says it was worth every penny. She says feeling connected to someone is priceless.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Andrea Location: Tennessee on Sep 8, 2011 at 10:02 AM
    I too was born and adopted in Augusta 1972. Im glad these stories came to light. My story is different too. My adoptive parents got me at a hotel and my neighbor at hotel as well. I didnt learn about neighbor until 2yrs ago. Ive searced for adoption procedures in 1972 and have come up empty handed. Maybe that was normal. The past adoptions in Georgia are inhumane and I hate it for the families that were hurt by the Black Market.
  • by Woody Allen on Sep 24, 2010 at 01:24 PM
    I traded my black market baby for a black market gun. Augusta is crazy now.
  • by Heather Meadows Location: News 12 on Sep 24, 2010 at 07:21 AM
    Hi Dee, this story is part 7 of a series. You can learn more about the alleged child-selling ring in our previous stories. They are linked from the end of the article.
  • by Anonymous on Sep 24, 2010 at 07:21 AM
    What a beautiful ending! God is so faithful! (and that was my own thoughts)
  • by Dee Location: Hephzibah on Sep 24, 2010 at 07:02 AM
    The title of this story caught my eye. It read beautifully and I enjoyed reading through the wonderful blessed reunion of the mother/daughter, but unfortunately the actual story of how and what about the Black Market in Augusta was lost. How was Bee manipulating adoptions? What was actually happening to these babies? Where were they being sold, to whom?
  • by saltine Location: Blythe on Sep 24, 2010 at 02:23 AM
    I am glad that ,something "heart-warming" came out of some thing so "heart-breaking"
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