Abandoned Frenchwoman searches for Vietnamese birth mother

By Anh Ngoc   September 20, 2020 | 02:00 am PT
Léa Collet, abandoned by her birth mother at a HCMC hospital in 1995 and adopted by a Frenchwoman and taken to France, now wants to find her roots.

Collet, who was abandoned by her mother at Tu Du Hospital, says: "I turned 25 on September 9. I told myself if I wanted to find Mom, it’s now or never."

For many years she has been thinking about finding her birth mother, but has embarked on her journey only now.

"My birth mother should be 59 now," she says.

Léa Collet in the arms of a nun at the Mam Non 2 Thu Duc orphanage in HCMC. Photo by Léa Collet .

Léa Collet in the arms of a nun at the Mam Non 2 Thu Duc orphanage in HCMC. Photo courtesy of Léa Collet.

With her adopted mother's support, Collet, who lives in Lyon in France, began her search by sharing all the information and images she had on Facebook, where she hoped someone would recognize her.

She had been born Tran Thi Kim Oanh. Her birth mother, whose name she says was either Tran Thi Sen or Tran Kim Sen, was a housewife. But she had refused to take the child home.

"I was sent to the Mam Non 2 Thu Duc orphanage, where nuns raised me."

When she was five weeks old she was adopted by a single Frenchwoman and taken to France a couple of months later.

Léa Collet (L) poses with her adopted French mother in France. Photo by Léa Collet.

Léa Collet (L) with her adoptive mother in France. Photo courtesy of Léa Collet.

"Since I was old enough to be aware that I was adopted, I always thought about my mother and family in Vietnam. I really wanted to find my birth mother and family."

A nun has told Collet that she also had a brother and sister, but she has been unable to verify the information yet. Nevertheless, she already has plans to visit Vietnam within the next two years to continue her search.

Her Facebook post has gained traction with hundreds of shares and comments, but there have been no leads so far.

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