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Woman discovers she was adopted by relatives after meeting birth mother

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SALT LAKE CITY — A Salt Lake City woman recently discovered she was adopted by her birth mother's relatives.

When Adrienne Tawa was choosing an adoptive family for her baby girl, five folders filled with descriptions of different families were given to her to choose from. Without knowing the names of any of the families, Tawa chose the third folder as the family she wanted to adopt her child.

When Carrie Cox Carrie turned 18, she began searching for her birth mother, but she discovered the adoption records had been closed. Carrie registered with LDS Social Services in hopes of finding her birth mother, and she even hired a private investigator, but her search was fruitless for years.

It wasn't until Tawa started searching for Carrie that all the pieces started coming together.

"I just had a thought or an impression. Just look up adoption records," Tawa said. "It asked me to put in a birth date, so I typed in a birthdate and it said Carrie Lynn Cox, LDS Social Services. So I was like, ‘she wants me to find her,' So, I made the one phone call."

Carrie's adoptive father, Mark Cox, answered. Tawa said she was filled with so much emotion that she could hardly get any words out during the call.

"I thought, ‘Is this a prank call or what?'" Mark said. "I asked her when was (Carrie) was born, what hospital?"

Cox called Carrie, and they eventually they got together with Tawa.

It was a special moment for Carrie and her birth mother.

"So much was explained in an instant of who I am and what came to be me and how I came to be that way," Carrie said.

But it wasn't just Carrie who would get answers from her birth mother. Tawa told the Cox's that her maiden name is Cox too.

"I said, 'I have a lot of relatives in St. George-Cedar city area,' and she said, ‘Well I have a lot of relatives in that area too,'" Cox explained. "So I threw out the name Edwin Charles Cox."

Carrie said Tawa almost fell out of her chair after hearing her great grandfather's name, who is also Cox's great grandfather.

After two generations of searching, now the Cox's and the Tawa feel like a complete family.

"That's certainly what it's turned out to be in every way," Tawa said.

Carrie, her adopted parents and birth mom are all now very close. She says sometimes it's a little overwhelming how much love is shared amongst them all.

"It helps us all to understand a little bit more of who we are," Cox said.


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