Can you imagine being reunited with your daughter after 82 years? This is what happened to a Pennsylvanian mother and daughter who separated six months after birth.
Lena Pierce, 96, and daughter Betty Morrell, 82, were reunited at Greater Binghamton Airport in mid January after Ms Morrell, along with her granddaughter Kimberly Miccio, used genealogical search website ancestry.com to track down one of Ms Pierce’s other daughters, Millie Hawk (who turned out to be one of six siblings!).
“It was like the beginning of my life,” Ms Morrell told ABC News US.
Born Eva May in 1933, Ms Morrell was given up for adoption due to her 13-year-old mother’s status as a ward of the state.
Eva May was adopted by a Long Island family, and raised as “Betty Morrell”.
In time she discovered she was adopted, but it wasn’t until her adoptive mother’s death that Ms Morrell began her search for her biological mother.
“I know I was loved and had a wonderful family,” she said.
“There was that missing link. It just kept driving me.”
9 News reported that the first clues came after Ms Morrell’s adoptive aunty let it “slip” that she was once known as Eva and that she was born in the city of Utica.
Ms Morrell wrote to all hospitals in Utica and managed to obtain her “Eva May” birth record.
Unfortunately due to the policy of adoption agency at the time, Ms Morrell was unable to obtain any further information about her family.
After many more years had passed, Ms Morrell finally found some answers, thanks in large part to the internet.
“I’ve got a mother! And I’ve got a sister!” she recalled saying at the time.
Through Ms Hawk, Ms Morrell discovered that her mother had made repeated attempts to make contact with her lost daughter, without luck.
A meeting was organised and mother and daughter finally reunited and a friendship forged between the two sisters.
Ms Morrell says that while Ms Pierce often forgets her identity due to her age, she is overjoyed at having at last found her biological family.
“It’s an experience that not many get at my age or my mother’s age,” she said.
“It’s the best thing that’s happened to me.”