From the time he was born, Rodney Atkins has had to fight obstacles to get where he is today. A sickly child, he was born with a respiratory infection and given up for adoption. While living in a small-town orphanage, Rodney was adopted by loving parents Allan and Margaret Atkins and raised in Harrogate, Tennessee. Rodney has never talked about his birth mother before, until now. He shared with the Associated Press that he met her in 2008, after becoming the spokesman for the National Council for Adoption.
“It hit me at that moment, walking in that room, getting to know her,” Rodney told AP. “She’s a wonderful, beautiful lady. I realized that the reason I needed to do that did not have anything to do with my parents. I’m glad I did that really, really, really for her. She’s been carrying that around, wondering what happened, and I could tell it was such a relief.”
Rodney says his birth mother got pregnant at 19 after what he described as a traumatic first date. She hid the pregnancy from her family and chose to give him up for adoption.
“I just wanted to tell her thank you, because she had some other alternatives to end that situation,” he tells AP. “I might not be here. So you don’t want to take it for granted. She kept saying, ‘I’m sorry.’ I kept saying, ‘Thank you.’”
GAC recently went back home with the talented singer for the special, Origins: Rodney Atkins. If you missed Wednesday’s premiere, you can still catch it this Saturday, Oct. 15 at 10/9c. Here’s a sneak peek below: