(CBS) – A Chicago-area native now living in Texas says he’s in a life-or-death search for the truth.
Sam Miller just learned he was adopted as a baby. And now he’s suffering from a potentially fatal kidney disease.
He wants to know if he is the baby Paul Fronczak, who was kidnapped nearly 50 years ago in Chicago.
CBS 2’s Mike Parker reports.
Meet Sam Miller of Dallas. He suffers from an incurable disease and may soon need a new kidney to survive. A blood relative could provide one.
But that’s a problem.
“Three weeks ago, I found out I was adopted. It’s been a crazy three weeks,” he says.
Miller is clinging to one possibility about his past: that perhaps he is the infant, Paul Fronczak, stolen from his mother’s arms shortly after birth from Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago 50 years ago.
That kidnapped baby has never been found.
“I sure would like to find out who I am and where I’m from, because my only hope for a long-term, healthy life is a kidney, and I’m a family man with two children and I’m going to find a way to survive,” he says.
There is at least one possible clue to Miller’s original identity: similarities between a photo of the Fronczak infant and a baby picture of Miller.
Is it possible the woman who snatched the Fronczak baby later gave up the child for adoption?
After his adoption, Miller grew up in Wheeling and Winnetka.
As a toddler, one man who had been found abandoned in New Jersey was thought to be the stolen child. He was raised by the Fronczaks as their son. But in recent years, DNA proved he was not.
Miller’s teenage son is playing a big role in trying to solve this mystery. He’s posted facts and photos online.
“Even if I end up being Paul, I really see no reason to try to find out who stole me is. There is no value in it,” he says. “I’m simply doing what is logical in order to find a way to survive — and trying to laugh on the way down. Because if you don’t laugh, you cry.”
Miller says he has reached out to the FBI to see if they’ll use his DNA to find out if he’s Paul Fronczak.
He says he’s ready to go along with God’s plan, whatever it turns out to be.