A woman approaching her 70th birthday still hasn’t found her biological parents

From the day of her birth, a significant part of Sharon Prather Moses’ life has been shrouded in mystery.

Moses was discovered in a doctor’s car on September 19, 1952 at Riverview Hospital in Noblesville. A newspaper article from the time described the child as still wet from birth, wrapped in newspaper and with a few sheets stuck to his skin.

Now, nearly 70 years later, Moses, 69, is still searching for information about his birth parents. Many of those involved, such as the doctors who discovered Moses, have since died. And after more than 40 years of searching for her biological family, the trail has largely grown cold.

Sharon Moses was left in a doctor’s car outside Riverview Hospital on September 19, 1952. (Photo courtesy of Riverview Hospital)

Moses spent her first days of life at Riverview Hospital, where she was named “Caroletta Doe” by the hospital. After her birth parents never came forward, she was adopted by Carroll and Edna Mae Prather. Edna Mae Prather worked at Riverview Hospital.

Moses grew up in Lawrence and now lives in Tennessee with her husband, Wendell, but she still makes frequent trips to Noblesville in search of information about her birth family.

Moses didn’t learn his unique story until he was 29 years old. Growing up in a family with three adopted children, she always heard about her siblings’ adoption stories, but never her own.

“I was the first of three adopted children in the Prather family, and whenever I asked about my story, my mom always said, ‘You’re just special,'” Moses said. “My mum and dad divorced in 1975, and after my mum remarried, her new husband, Lee Cox, said, ‘Sharon deserves to know this story.’ That’s when I found out.”

This led Moses on a decades-long search to discover his biological family.

“Some people need to know where they’re from and some people don’t,” Moses said. “I’m one of those who needs to know.”

Moses placed an ad in an Indianapolis newspaper in 1980 for information about his biological family and received an anonymous response by mail encouraging him to try to contact Dr. Eugene Newby, who worked at Riverview Hospital.

Moses met Newby in 1981. She said Newby locked his car the day he was born and the car next to hers was unlocked. Moses was left in the unlocked car, but Newby said she was supposed to be left in his. When Moses sought answers from Newby, he tried to dissuade her from looking further.

“He wasn’t mean, but he was very sharp,” Moses said.

Moses said Newby asked her if she had had a bad life, and when she replied “no”, he told her to “go live it”.

Throughout the years of his search, Moses spoke to staff at Riverview Hospital, the attorney who handled his adoption, and officials in the Hamilton County court system, all of which led to dead ends. Since her search began, Newby and the others involved in her adoption have passed away.

When Current asked if Riverview Hospital had any records of adoptions from the 1950s, hospital officials said Indiana state law requires that hospital records be retained for seven years, and it is Riverview’s policy to retain such records for 10 years.

“Unfortunately, we have no official records dating back 50 years and nothing related to this case,” Riverview said in a statement.

In the fall of 2021, Wendell Moses hired Brenda McGinley, owner of All In Investigations, a private investigation firm in Indianapolis, as a surprise for his wife. So far, the private detective has found part of Newby’s family, but hasn’t made any progress beyond that.

Sharon Moses lives in Tennessee with her husband Wendell. (Photo courtesy of Sharon Moses)

Moses took a DNA test through 23andMe, but she did not receive the results. She hopes McGinley can help her find something about her biological family.

“I want to know who I am,” Moses said. “I had a hard time getting pregnant with my first child and couldn’t have adopted her because I never felt like I could relate to anyone in my family.”

Moïse last traveled to Noblesville in the fall of 2021 for a high school reunion. She attended Indiana Academy in Cicero and graduated in 1971. After high school, she attended Southern Missionary College in Tennessee, now known as Southern Adventist University. She was a nurse from 1974 to 1994.

Now Moses is retired. She enjoys landscaping, herb gardening, cooking, traveling and entertaining. She also enjoys reading about American history. She has two adult children and says her greatest joy is being a mother.

All In Investigations next steps

All In Investigations owner Brenda McGinley said despite the instances where Sharon Moses’ adoption case had gone cold, there was still hope.

Besides the 23andMe DNA test that Moses has completed, McGinley is awaiting the results of an ancestry.com DNA test.

“When we have that, we’ll start researching any kind of connection,” said McGinley, who lives in Indianapolis. “I think there is hope. Someone knows something.

Comments are closed.