Man reunites with biological mom after 20 years and finds out they work in the same hospital

After two decades, a Utah man was reunited after his birth mother sent him a Facebook Message on his birthday last November.

Benjamin Hulleberg, a middle-school substitute teacher, knew from a young time that he was adopted in his parents’ home by Angela and Brian Hulleberg. He grew up wanting to meet his biological mom, whom he only knew as “Holly.”


“It was always a very positive conversation,” Benjamin, 20, told Good Morning America. “It was my parents either expressing gratitude for Holly or me talking about how I’m grateful for her and how I want to meet her one day.”

Holly Shearer, 36, thought often about the baby boy she adopted on Thanksgiving Day twenty-two years ago.

Benjamin was born to her when she was only 15. For three years, the boy’s adoptive parents, whom she only knew by their first names and the first letter of their last names, sent her letters and photos.

A young Holly Shearer carrying newborn baby Benjamin in her arms

However, they stopped receiving updates and closed their adoption agency in 2014. That’s when Holly started to wonder more about her son.

She searched online and found Benjamin’s social media page. Holly was 18 when Holly first found him. She hesitated to make contact.

“He had so much going on his life. … The last thing I wanted to do is to throw a wrench in his life. So I just watched from a distance,” she said.

Benjamin, who had long talked about Holly’s search with his parents, was unaware that Holly had found him. He did everything—he wrote letters, signed up with an adoption registry, and took a DNA test in hopes of finding his birth mother.

Holly Shearer giving baby Benjamin to Angela and Brian Hulleberg

Holly finally got the courage to message Benjamin two years after she first found him online.

Benjamin would never forget that day.

“I can remember the exact place that I was at when I got the message. I was at work. I was a machine operator, and I can recall being in machine No. 15,” he recalled. “I was in between our hourly quality checks and I got on my phone and I saw her message and I just replied.”

Holly Shearer's message to Benjamin

When Holly texted him back and revealed who she was, Benjamin said the words hit him “like a load of bricks.”

“I was crying. It was all very positive emotions. It was a day that I had been waiting for for the last 20 years. To think that it was finally happening was crazy to me. It was a lot to take in,” he said.

Benjamin asked Holly for a date immediately, and they had dinner with both their families the next day on November 21, 2020.

Mother and son shared a long embrace, and then they both wept when they met.

Holly Shearer and Benjamin Hulleberg

“I would definitely say it was a dream come true,” Benjamin said. “I’ve said that about things in my life, like ‘Oh, I’m so glad I graduated. It’s a dream come true.’ But this? This was the most true time I’ve ever said it.”

The two families spent three hours catching-up. And during the conversation, Holly and Benjamin found out that they had both been working at St. Mark’s Hospital in Salt Lake City for the last two years.

Holly is a medical assistant at The Heart Center and Benjamin volunteers at The NICU.

“Every morning, I would come in through the women’s pavilion to come into work. Every single day, I passed right past the NICU. We parked in the same garage, could have been on the same floor, had no idea that we were so close,” Holly said.

Benjamin Hulleberg and Holly Shearer together with their families

Benjamin, who calls Holly “mom,” has since connected with his younger half-brother and half-sister. He also tries his best to meet Holly at her office at least once a week.

“Meeting my biological family and meeting my half-siblings and meeting my biological mom, it was very healing for me,” Benjamin said.

“There was a little hole in me that I didn’t know about and finding them really filled that in. I feel complete, whole. I feel like I’m finally ready to continue in my life.”

We’re so glad to see this mother and son reunited. Their love has always been there, even after 20 years apart.

Click the video below for more information about this touching story of a reunion.

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