Colonel Bruce Hollywood of the US Air Force decided he wanted to meet his birth mother after suffering a heart attack in 2005. He knew he was adopted from Japan when his mother gave him up in 1960. He was adopted by an American couple who were stationed in Japan with the U.S. military and he was raised stateside. But after his brush with death, he wanted to learn more about his origins.
His adoptive parents always encouraged Bruce to meet his birth mother, but he never really thought about it until his heart attack. So he began his search for his family at the age of 44. He contacted the US Embassy in Tokyo and even hired a private investigator. But no one could find her. Later, the embassy called Hollywood to inform him that they found his mother, a woman named Nobue Ouchi. On that day, Bruce spoke to his mother on the phone for the first time with the help of an interpreter.
“And [the interpreter] said, ‘Well, tomorrow is your mother’s 65th birthday, and the birthday present that she dreamed of her whole life is that you would come back to her’,” Hollywood said. He was told by his mother that she never married “because she said in her heart there was only room for one man. And it was you, and she knew you would be back.”
Hollywood’s mother ran a restaurant that she named “Bruce”. Before the Hollywoods left Japan, they gave Ouchi a baby photo of her son and told her they named him Bruce. Ten days after speaking to his mother for the first time, Bruce flew to Japan to meet his mother in person. Bruce would continue to have a close friendship with Ouchi for three years, and they would fly back and forth from Washington to Japan, until Ouchi passed away in 2009.