Looking For Jeff Smith

The mission?

A man searches for his biological father to thank him for giving him life and the opportunity to make a difference in the world.

Why am I looking for Jeff Smith?

After losing my mother, Chen Yu-chu, at the age of 44 to cancer, and losing my adopted father, Sergeant Major David Coolidge to the mysterious Gulf War syndrome when he was in his early 50's, I realized how precious and temporary life was. These parents were great role models, and I owe them for all of the sacrifices they made to raise me, my brothers and sister and guiding us to build the lives we have. While I was in high school, I learned that I was adopted by David Coolidge. I wanted to know who my real father was. My mother was reluctant to tell, me but she revealed to me the name of an American serviceman, Jeff Smith, and gave me only a little information about their relationship she had with him before he was reassigned back to the USA. Jeff told her he was going to get a job as a teacher in New York, but that is not something I can confirm.

Tony and Shu-min Coolidge

Tony and Shu-min Coolidge in November 2012.

Years have passed, and I have been curious about my biological father. With so little information, and such a common name, I was reluctant to take on the daunting task of finding him. I also admit that I have been afraid of how I might feel, if I faced him in person. But after the death of my parents, I gained a different perspective on this. I believe that Jeff Smith may be curious about his son, and want to know about his life. He may have no way of knowing how to find me. With this effort to find him, I believe he deserves to be given a choice to reconnect with his son, before it is too late.

Jeff Smith's grandsons

My three wonderful boys would like to know who their grandfather is, if given the chance.

I want nothing from him. I feel no ill will towards him. He did his job as a parent for me, by giving me life. I have plenty in my life and have no regrets. He deserves his privacy. But Mr. Smith also deserves the chance to know that he has a biological son and grandsons, if he wants to. If I can find any leads or contacts, I would only want them to give them my name and contact information to give to Jeff Smith. I also would like to know that the information was given to him, so I know my mission was accomplished. He will have plenty of opportunity to know me before he reaches out to me, by searching my name on Google.

I created this web page, because I realize that I need assistance. I cannot do this alone. I want to accomplish this mission before it is too late. No one knows how long they have to live. I have learned a lot abut my mother's cultural heritage in Taiwan. If I had a chance to talk to him, I would love to know more about my cultural heritage from my father's side. I think I could learn more about myself from knowing him.


I have searched intensively in the past using the Internet and talked to several people, and here is what I have.

Photo of Mr. Smith in Vietnam

A photo of Jeff Smith in Taipei, Taiwan in 1965 or 1966 (in glasses).

Zoom in photo of the face.

A photo of his face zoomed in.

Photo of Jeff     Smith in Linkou, Taiwan

A photo of Jeff Smith in Phu Bai, South Vietnam in 1967 or 1968 (At far end of table wearing glasses).

Photo of Jeff Smith in Linkou, Taiwan

A photo of Jeff Smith in Phu Bai, South Vietnam in 1967 or 1968 (Far right wearing glasses).

Vietnam 1964

Vietnam 1968. Jeff Smith is on the bottom right.

Vietnam 1964

Jeff lived in this tent in Phu Bai, Vietnam from 1967 - 1968.

There is not much known about his possible whereabouts. Because I don't have a social security number, I have been limited in my ability to search records. I tired to apply for a DD14 from the Veteran's Administration, but that required a social security number. I was told I could ask the FBI using the Freedom of Information Act, but I searched and the directions procedures are unclear. I am at a point where I could use help. I made a web site in case Jeff Smith, his friends or relatives ever do a search. They may find this page and be inspired to share it with him. I have taken this action, and I can now pray and hope for an answer.

What I Would Say To Him

Thank you sir, for giving me life. That is the most precious gift you could give me, and it is more that enough for me. I deserve nothing else from you. I give you the gift of knowing you have a son who is doing the best he can with his life to make the world a better place for others. Thank you for giving me that chance. You should also know you have three of the greatest grandsons anyone could ask for. They make me proud just about every day, and I am enjoying rediscovering life through their experiences. I want you to know you always have an open door to know us. You can always Google my name and you will discover what I have been doing with my life. You can always contact me to know anything else you like. I would love to learn more about you and to know your cultural heritage, as it is a part of me, too. It would be great to know and understand the part of my heritage that I don't yet know. I hope this message finds you well. You deserve to have a happy life. Thank you for risking your life as an American soldier and performing a job that was not appreciated enough at that time.

Mother's Story

Tony and his mother in Taiwan in 1967.

Chen Yu-chu and her baby "Tony" in Taiwan in late 1967.

Jeff "Smitty" Smith met my mother at work. They started a relationship. Smitty was described as a intelligent, quiet guy with a few friends. He had glasses and a big forehead. He had thin dirty blond hair. My mother got pregnant, and Jeff Smith told her that he had to return to New York, and would start a job as a teacher. He said he would send for her, but that didn't happen, as was the story for many women in Taiwan at that time. She was obviously upset, and tore up all photos and correspondence from him, so she did not have much information to offer me. She met David Coolidge in Taiwan and married him, and had three other children with him. We lived throughout the world as a military family and had a diverse and interesting life. My mother was close to me, and her life was dedicated to her children, but she was homesick for Taiwan. She divorced and remarried, relocating to Orlando, Florida. She died of cancer at the age of 45, and never fulfilled her dream of returning to Taiwan.