China couple shocked to discover ‘dead’ son alive after 33 years

24-06-2024 12:23 PM

Ammon News - A couple in China who believed their son had died shortly after he was born, discovered more than three decades later that he was actually alive and well.

Zhang Huaiyuan, 33, raised in a poverty-stricken rural village in Anhui province, eastern China, was shocked to discover that he was adopted and that his biological parents were wealthy merchants from Zhejiang province in southeastern China.

Doctors told Zhang’s birth parents he was dead because he was born prematurely, but he had in fact been given to a relative of the hospital director who was unable to conceive.

Zhang grew up about 400 kilometres away from Zhejiang province where his birth parents live.

The couple who adopted him were in their 50s and the father was disabled, so Zhang faced financial hardship which meant he dropped out of school at 17.

It wasn’t until after his adoptive father’s death in 2023 that his adoptive mother told Zhang he was not their biological child.

After being separated for decades, Zhang finally met his biological parents in May this year, with the help of the police.

At a big celebration held in Zhejiang on May 20, Zhang’s birth father, Li Shijie, tearfully presented his son with a bank card for an account containing 1.2 million yuan (US$166,000).

Zhang is the Li family’s second child.

“Our first child was just a year old when we conceived our second. Since the first was born via caesarean section which hadn’t fully healed, my wife’s incision reopened during the sixth month of pregnancy,” Li said.

The child was delivered prematurely and the doctors declared him dead soon after birth.

Despite growing up in poverty, Zhang seemed to inherit his biological parents’ knack for business as he owned a small factory.

Recently, the Li’s visited Zhang’s home in Tianjin, eastern China, where they met their daughter-in-law and nine-year-old grandson.

“My poor child lived for over 30 years not knowing his own birthday. This year, our family will finally celebrate it together,” Li Shijie said.

Online observers have shared in the family’s delight.

“Your story is something even a screenwriter could not make up. The family is finally happy and complete. Best wishes to you,” one online observer said.

“Look at the family photo, Zhang looks so much like his mother,” said another.

Zhang was also praised for building his business through hard work, rather than solely relying on the fortune of his birth parents.

Other stories about children separated from their families, have surfaced recently.

In December last year, Xie Qingshuai, a 25-year-old man in China who was abducted in childhood, reunited with his affluent parents and was given three flats and a car at his emotional homecoming ceremony.

In the same year, another father who had been searching for his son, abducted 22 years before, made a desperate bid to encourage more people to provide DNA data for the police to make a match.

He said he had worked hard for his six properties and four companies and wanted to pass them on to his son.

South China Morning Post

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