It was truly a Christmas miracle when an 88-year-old woman of Tampa, Florida, reunited with her long-lost daughter, whom she thought had died at birth in 1949, nearly seven decades later in December 2018.
Genevieve Purinton was an 18-year-old unwed mother as she endured the agony of labor, giving birth to a baby girl alone at a hospital in Gary, Indiana, on May 12, 1949, The New York Times reported.
Purinton had even named the baby after one of her favorite high school teachers, who had polio—Margaret Ann—but sadly, she never saw her newborn.
Moments later when Purinton asked to see her daughter, the hospital staff falsely told her the baby had died.
“I was told it was a girl, but she died,” Purinton said.
Purinton believed what she was told, and hence, for the next 69 years, she lived her life thinking her daughter never made it at birth.
In truth, Purinton’s daughter, eventually named Connie Moultroup, had been sent to an orphanage and later moved to California with her adoptive parents.
Moultroup had always known she was adopted. She was informed by her adoptive parents that she had been born to a “friend of a friend.”
“My favorite bedtime story was how my parents walked up and down the halls of the hospital looking at all the babies until they found me and then they stopped. It was sweet,” Moultroup told InsideEdition.
It was only 69 years later in 2018 that the mother and daughter were reconnected with the help of an Ancestry DNA kit, which was given to Moultroup as a Christmas gift in 2017.
Moultroup submitted her ancestry DNA test and was led to what she thought was her mother’s name, and ultimately, a phone call with a newly found cousin.
“She reached out to me. I told her my mother’s name was Genevieve Mitch and she said, ‘Oh, that’s my aunt, and oh by the way, she is still alive,’” Moultroup, now 69, said.
Purinton, now 88, who never had another child and was the last surviving member of her immediate family after all her eight siblings passed away, was shocked to learn her daughter was still alive through a card sent to her by Moultroup’s cousin.
In the card, Purinton saw her daughter’s contact information, whom she thought had died nearly seven decades ago. In August 2018, she called Moultroup, her daughter, for the first time in her life.
“She said, ‘I think I might be your mother.’ I just about dropped my teeth,” Moultroup said.
On Dec. 3, 2018, Moultroup’s lifelong dream came true as she reunited with Purinton at the assisted living center in Tampa, Florida.
“I walked into her retirement home and I knew it was her because she walked with a walker. And [there] was only one woman there with a walker,” Moultroup said.
“She turned around and it was like looking in the mirror. I look just like her. We just walked over to one another and both of us started crying.”
The mother and daughter shed tears of joy as they hugged for the first time in 69 years.
“You’re really not dead,” said an emotional Purinton.
“I’m not dead,” Moultroup replied, laughing.
Speaking to FOX 13, Moultroup, who came all the way from Vermont for the reunion, said: “It’s been a lifetime of wanting this. I remember being 5 years old, wishing I could find my mother.”
And the good thing was, Purinton, who had no one, ended up having a daughter, granddaughter, and great grandchildren.
Moultroup believes it was God that made the reunion possible.
“In my eyes, [His] fingerprints are all over this,” she said.
“I’ve just met my biological mother for the first time in my life!!!!! What a blessed and wonderful Christmas present!!!! It’s something I’ve dreamed of my whole life….literally,” Moultroup wrote on Facebook.
By the grace of God, a month later on Jan. 2, Moultroup, who never had siblings, met up with her two half sisters, the daughters of her biological father, at a gathering.
“It was fabulous!! I feel complete now!!!” Moultroup told The Epoch Times.
Who doesn’t love a happy mother-daughter reunion story? We’re glad Purinton and Moultroup finally found each other after spending 69 years apart.
Watch the video:
Photo courtesy of Connie Moultroup