Route 66

Season 4 Episode 13

Child of a Night

Aired Friday 8:30 PM Jan 03, 1964 on CBS

Episode Recap

One night as they are headed down to Jacksonville, Tod and Linc are witnesses to an aviation accident. One of the passengers asks the two of them to relay a message and a stack of money to his child, whom he has been trying to get to Savannah to see. While Tod doesn't want to entertain the notion, as the man gave them very little to go on, Linc insists on honoring the dying man's wish and the two men stay in the De Soto Hotel in Savannah.

A trip to the county bureau of vital statistics nets nothing as all they had is the woman's name, Lonnie, the father's name, Gerald, and the $38,000 he left with Linc, in addition to the fact that the child was given up for adoption shortly after its birth. Linc decides to put an ad in the local paper, which gives him his first lead in a woman who is Lonnie's caretaker. Slowly, information starts to come together as Tod finds out that Lonnie works as a seamstress while Linc discovers someone in Savannah, a young man who fits the timeframe of the child's birth and who indeed was orphaned by his birth parents.

Tod and Linc track down Lonnie at her place of business, but she is not particularly interested in speaking about the adoption. She does, however, remember everything about it, claiming she hasn't been able to forget it. When they return, it is with the young man Linc found earlier and he goes off on a rage-filled tantrum at Lonnie, only to break down in tears when she reveals that she gave birth to a daughter and thus can't be his mother.

Tod and Linc decide to follow up on another lead given to them earlier. Around the time she had given birth, Lonnie worked as a cocktail waitress in a bar in Savannah. The previous owner of the bar sold it off to one of his employees years before and took a job as a janitor in one of the local public schools. Before he did, however, he took Lonnie's daughter in as a favor and, with his wife, raised her as their own until his wife died and left him a widow. The janitor tells Tod and Linc that her name is Nita and she owns an antique store in town, but not to reveal anything to her as she doesn't know the truth and it would be too much for her to bear.

After a visit to the antique store and a second visit with the janitor, Tod and Linc return and the janitor tells Nita the entire truth about her upbringing and apologizes for not being able to bring it up sooner. Nita decides to visit with her birthmother, and Tod and Linc leave her with Lonnie as they head back on their way.