A Father’s Day Gamble.

Please share the following with EVERYONE. I’m basically buying a lottery ticket, here:

For Father’s Day, this year, I’ve decided to take a risk, because I’d like to someday meet my father, and/or my paternal relatives. I’d also like to find people I remember from my early childhood, and/or people who can tell me more about my mother, or share pictures with me.

mom at 17 mom grandpa and me mom

This woman is Suzanne Cordelia Willard, my mother. (That baby is me.) She spent most of her life in Western WA state, and British Columbia. She died in August 1983, in Snohomish, WA, and due to her death and the circumstances surrounding it, I no longer have access to any of her associates from the late 1970’s and early 1980’s—the people who might have any idea of my father’s identity.

Years ago, a relative gave me the name and number of the man she believed to be my father. I called him, and he asked one simple question, “Are you sure you REALLY want to know?” I choked on the question. Did I? This story has dark chapters. Do I really want to know HOW dark?

That day, I said, “I …. Don’t … know.” The man assured me he wasn’t my father, and said he’d ask around among their common acquaintances. Life moved on, and I don’t have his name or contact information anymore. It may have been a dead end, or a lost opportunity. I may never know.

I’m stronger now. If asked the same question today, I’d say, “Yes.” Now that I’ve been able to fill out my mother’s entire family tree, thereby filling in half of mine, the other side begs to be filled. The grandfather I found through adoption records and DNA testing has passed away, but he left me with a large, glorious collection of relatives, as well as a greater understanding of how I came to look and “be” the way that I am.

This has been one of the most amazing gifts life has ever offered to me.

Now, NO MATTER WHO my father is, I want to know. (Seriously. I will visit you in prison, if necessary.)

So, here’s the tiny bit I know: He had a sexual relationship or encounter with my mother in the winter of 1975/1976. That’s it.

I know she married a man with the last name Carr when she was 17, around 1971. I think his first name was Dean. I remember living with a logging truck driver named Don Fagg when I was about kindergarten age. I remember a man named Joel, who was incredibly kind, who my mother intended to marry in the late 70’s to early 80’s. (I also remember that I flat refused, hysterically, even, to ride on the back of his motorcycle, even though my mother insisted he was the better driver, and I’d be safer with him than with her.)

I remember living in Burlington, WA, Marysville, WA, and Calgary, AB. I remember visiting Vancouver, BC., where I was born. I remember Gaylene and Trevor, the Canadian couple with whom I lived off and on during my early childhood, and Trevor’s mother June, with whom I enjoyed a single reunion while on my honeymoon in 1998. I remember talking to Gaylene once as an adult (In 1998), but I lost her last name and phone number years ago. I remember Reese, from Vancouver, who came to visit me once after my mother died. I remember another, unnamed woman, who showed up at my elementary school in 1st grade, just to check and make sure I was ok, never to be seen again. I remember a lot more, but names and dates are foggy, given my young age and the migratory nature of my mother and I’s life while she was with me.

I’d like to learn more. If you can help me, if you remember me, or my mother, please comment on this post. Your comment will NOT appear publicly. I administrate all comments.

One thought on “A Father’s Day Gamble.

  1. AmberDawn,

    I don’t know if this helps you or not, but you are the closest match I have found at FamilyTreeDNA, to the account tied to Pamela Fern Provendazo. According to the site, we are 2nd or 3rd cousins. I’d love to run names with you and see what we come up with…


    Jennifer Lindsey McLaughlin

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