A DAD who hadn’t seen his long-lost son since he was forced to give him up for adoption as a baby has been reunited with him 55 years later.
Retired farmer Richard Standen, 73, from Wiltshire, saw his son Darren for the first time in over five decades, after he was tracked down on ITV’s Long Lost Family.
Richard met his first love Christine when he was 15, and after two years she fell pregnant.
Christine was sent away by her mother to have the baby secret, but Richard visited her throughout the pregnancy, and held baby Darren after he was born in January 1966.
Richard was left heartbroken after discovering the couple’s parents had arranged for Darren to be taken away and adopted.
Richard said on the show: “I just loved the feeling of being a family man.
“I held him and I was proud but it was only two minutes. I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Christine and our baby.
“The lady came in the room. I didn’t think he was going to be taken away. It was just so quick. This was the last time I saw him, he was our baby she stole.”
The traumatic experience caused Christine and Richard’s relationship to break down, and they eventually went on to have families of their own.
I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Christine and our baby.
Tragically Christine took her own life in 1997 after battling depression, but had told her daughter Kim Gardener about her half brother Darren, who she had never met.
Kim said: “I think there was a lot of guilt which she carried in her heart about it.
"Since mum’s death I had this real need to find Darren but I haven’t got anywhere. He was always in her heart.”
Desperate to find Darren, Richard, 73, and Kim, 53, tracked each other down and spent three years trying to locate him.
After having no luck, the ITV show stepped into help.
Richard stressed: “I need to tell him that he has never been forgotten and he has always been loved.”
The team were able to legally access adoption records using a specialist intermediary, and found Darren had been adopted by the Robinson family.
However, there was no UK record as he had emigrated to Australia in 2001.
The show helped to locate Darren Down Under and he eventually travelled to his birthplace in Essex.
There, he was reunited in emotional scenes with his dad and sister, who sobbed when they met for the first time.
Since mum’s death I had this real need to find Darren but I haven’t got anywhere. He was always in her heart.
Richard told Darren: “I have been worried for a long time about you being all right. I am very grateful to your mum and dad for bringing you up well.”
Kim added: “You have always been wanted and loved. I’m so pleased to find you.”
Darren was equally thrilled, and said: “It’s the start of something, it’s not going to end here.”
- Long Lost Family continues tonight at 9pm on ITV.
Previously, a mum forced to give up child at 14 overjoyed as daughter finds her on Facebook 50 years on in Long Lost Family ‘miracle’.
And Long Lost Family fans were left in floods of tears over ‘heart-wrenching cruelty’ of twins separated at birth.
Source: Read Full Article