[KHTS] – This year, Chris Schauble, KTLA news anchor and Stevenson Ranch resident, celebrated Mother’s Day twice over, honoring his adoptive mom and his birth mom, who he met for the first time in April.
It came after Schauble’s six-month journey to find his birth family, that ended in meeting his birth mother, Virginia Robinson and the family of his late birth father, John Charles “J.C.” Robinson.
Schauble, who is now 44, said that for most of his life he didn’t care to search for his birth family, because he was raised by loving adoptive parents and is very happy in who he is.
But he also realized that there were certain things about his medical history that he would never be able to share with his wife and daughters.
“The older I get, the more I realize I really do care,” he said.
In October, with the help of a KTLA crew, Schauble started on square one, his birthplace and place of adoption–Florida.
He signed up for the Florida Adoption Reunion Registry, which connects adoptees with birth families who are looking for them.
After failing to find a match on the FARR, Schauble requested that a Florida judge unseal the birth records from his closed adoption.
The judge approved his request, and when Schauble received the name and number of his birth mother, the story of birth began to unfold.
It took him an hour to work up the courage to call Virginia Robinson, Schauble said, but when he did, he discovered that she had prayed to hear his voice before she died.
He learned how his mother, an Italian American from Connecticut and his father, an African American from Florida had met in the late 1960s, during a time when interracial relationships were still taboo.
After Virginia Robinson became pregnant, she told J.C. Robinson that she didn’t think he was fit to be a father. The two split up, only to marry two years later. By then, Schauble had already been put up for adoption.
Before flying to Texas to meet his mother, Schauble returned to Florida, where his father’s side of the family still lives. There, he met his brother J.C. Robinson, Jr. and visited his father’s grave.
A few days later he was flying to New Braunfels, Texas to meet Virginia Robinson, an emotional day for everyone involved.
“For me, finding my birth mother was like a weight being lifted off my soul,” Schauble said. “I didn’t even really realize it was that heavy… I thought I was the one getting some form of closure and answers and things of that nature, when really it was both of us.”
What is Schauble’s advice to other adoptees who have questions about their origins? He said people should try to find out where they come from if they are interested but that no one should let it consume them.
“I prepared myself to fail,” he said. “I was prepared to hit brick walls and be ok with it.”
He knew ahead of time that his six-month search might not end in a happy reunion, but he also said that he learned things about his past he never expected, like the fact that his mother had three children from a previous marriage and was 38 when she gave birth to him.
“I had always thought my mom was a distressed teenager,” he said.
It was amazing to learn the kind of people that his birth parents were, he said, and who he might have been if he had been raised by them.
“Don’t be afraid to take that journey even if there’s that possibility it could end in a negative fashion,” Schauble said. “You never know. It could also be amazingly positive.”
For Chris Schauble’s full story, view the series of videos that aired on KTLA.