Cleft lip dad adopts cleft lip baby.

This cleft lip news out of Atlanta made my Father’s Day last Sunday. The day had been marred by the death of my best friend’s wife the day before. However, I then noticed this news about cute-as-a-boot Hattie Pierce, pictured below. Like myself and so many others, Hattie was born with a cleft lip and palate, .

    Hattie Pierce w cleft lip and palate.

Cleft lip dad & daughter duo get surgery at same hospital.

She  was adopted by Brian Pierce who’d had his lip surgically restored long ago at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Forty years later, doctors there also operated on Hattie. 

Doesn’t get much more poignant than this.  

Cleft lip dad adopts baby just like himself.

On their honeymoon, Brian and his bride Molly met a family with a 12-year-old daughter adopted from China. The Pierces had always wanted to adopt someday, and so when it came time to do so, they told their adoption agency that Brian had a cleft lip and palate as a child.

Soon, a photo of a cleft  baby, Hattie, arrived smiling back at them. Brian  felt an instant connection with the child. Months later, the couple brought her home to meet her new big sister and dog.  

Although Brian was often teased as a child for his scars, he says 4-year-old Hattie has been spared so far. She’s a social butterfly, and all the other kids like to play with her.” 

She’s best friends  with her 5-year-old big sister. They play soccer together, although their coaches discovered they can’t be on the field at the same time. They just hold hands and ignore the soccer ball.

Cleft lip and palate Dad n Daughter 

 G. S. Brown’s piece  for ABC News lays out the details this way: 

To learn about CLEFT HEART: Chasing Normal, click the Amazon or Barnes & Noble buttons in the margins. Or click the image of the book cover. My coming-of-age memoir has intertwining love stories, mystery, tragedy, and triumph.


  1. Great story!

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