Barry Bogert Jr. became an orphan when he was just 5 years old. His mother died, and his father, whom he never met, was an American Navy sailor.
His father had an affair with his mother while stationed in the Philippines and then left for good. So when Barry went on national television and begged for his father to see him, it was a long shot. Fortunately, 6,000 miles away in the United States, Seattle restaurant owner Greg Rosas saw the clip of his plea.
“I want you to know that I want to see you,” Barry said, with tearful eyes, on the Filipino version of American Idol.
Greg has no blood connection to Barry, only a compassionate one: Greg was an orphan too. “I remember when I was a little young boy, too. My mom gave me up when I was 7 years old,” said Rosas.
Then Greg did something unbelievable: he pursued a string of clues and decided that he was going to help Barry find his dad.
“I picked up the phone, and he asked me, did I have a son in the Philippines from when I was in the military? And I said, ‘Yes,’” said Barry Bogert, Sr.
From there, it all fell into place. Greg flew Barry from the Philippines to Seattle with his own money.
After 28 years, Barry could not even walk when he saw his dad. He actually collapsed into his arms. The connection between parent and child is unbreakable. When another father, Dean Harper, was reunited with the daughter her mother kept from him, his entire life changed for the better.
“Don’t cry, son. Please, Barry, stop,” says Bogert, Sr. as he got a good look at the child he left behind. The moment is beautiful and cathartic.
Barry is now working in Greg’s Seattle restaurant so that he can be close to his father and earn enough money to bring his fiancee and two children to America as soon as possible.
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