Journey to Japan

My dad grew up in a Japanese orphanage. He never knew his biological parents. His father was an American soldier, his mother was Russian, and they immediately put him up for adoption at Kobo Orphanage in Japan. That is about the extent of what is known of them. Were they married? Why were they in Japan? Why did they leave him at an orphanage?

My dad grew up in a Japanese orphanage. He never knew his biological parents.

His father was an American soldier, his mother was Russian, and they immediately put him up for adoption at Kobo Orphanage in Japan. That is about the extent of what is known of them. Were they married? Why were they in Japan? Why did they leave him at an orphanage?

At the age of two or three (we don’t even know his real birthday), he was adopted. His adoptive parents later divorced and my grandmother eventually married the man that I knew as my grandfather. Having military parents (my grandmother’s first husband was Army, her second was Air Force), Dad moved around quite a bit as a child.

From Japan, they returned to the States. He then moved to Mainz, Germany for a year or so, back to the States (Tacoma and Fort Lewis, Washington) for a couple of years, then Landshut, Germany at 10, followed by San Antonio and Randolph Air Force base for a while, Ramstein AFB in Germany from 13-15, Benton, AR for a year and finally to Dallas for his senior year of high school.

Once graduated, he headed south to the University of Houston, where he met my mom and immediately professed his intention to marry her. Being an English lit minor, on their first date he quoted the Middle English prologue to The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer (thus the inspiration for my name). After living in Huntsville and Houston in the early years of marriage, they moved to Baytown, TX, and have been there ever since.

In the past couple of years, with the passing of both of my grandparents, my dad’s adoption papers have surfaced and we have learned that the orphanage in which he spent his first few years is still active today. Providentially, a family friend living in Tokyo for the past year or so has graciously invited my family to stay with him and visit the orphanage (as well as take in a few of the sites of Japan).

Lord willing, on April 8th, my dad, mom, brother, nephew, and I will see the genesis of Dad’s journey (unfortunately, my sister, in-laws, and nieces could not make the trip)—an ordained orchestration from an American orphan in Japan to a husband, father, grandfather, and most importantly, adopted son of our Father in heaven.