Birth and Adoption:
Abandoned on the steps of a police station in Seoul or in the street, details are scarce; the orphanage workers guessed at Toby Dawson's age and listed his birthday as November 30, 1978, and named him Kim Soo Chul. Adopted by two Vail, Colorado ski instructors, Mike and Deborah Dawson, Toby was adopted at the age of 3. Struggling with a new culture and language, Toby screamed in his sleep every night for almost a year. K.C., Toby's brother was adopted from South Korea about a year after Toby.
He retired from skiing in September, 2007. He plans on becoming a professional golfer.
Known for ....:
- Nicknamed "Awesome Dawson," Toby likes to tell people that his Korean middle name of Soo Chul is pronounced, "So Cool."
- Original Korean name was Bong-seok.
- Started skiing at the age of 4.
- Volunteers at the Korean Heritage Camp for Adoptive Families. It's the same camp he used to attend when he was a child. The goal of the camp is to help kids who are adopted maintain a sense of their Asian culture.
- Discovered that he also has a younger brother upon his adoption reunion.
- Plans on starting a foundation in his name to help other adoptees and orphans.
Adoption Search and Reunion:
DNA testing confirmed that a Busan city bus driver, Kim Jae-Su, is Toby Dawson's birth father. Toby's birth mother lost the 3-year-old while walking through a busy city market in 1981.
Quote on the International Adoption Experience:
- Jenkins Lee. "For Dawson, a Bronze and a Chance to Find Birth Parents." New York Times 16 February 2006.
- AFP."US Olympic Skier Visits SKorea to Trace Parents." YahooSports.com 26 February 2007.
- Herman Burt. "Olympic Medal Win Helps U.S.-Raised Korean Adoptee Find Biological Parent". YahooSports.com 27 February 2007.
- Herman Burt. "US Olympic Medalist Dawson Reunites with Biological Father". YahooSports.com 27 February 2007.