40 Years Later, Woman Reunites With Nurse Who Cradled Her After She Was Badly Burned
After nearly four decades, a woman has reunited with the nurse who lovingly cradled her when she was badly burned as a baby.
"I really didn't think it was ever going to happen," Amanda Scarpinati told INSIDE EDITION. "You're searching for someone and you have a name - but I just had a face from 37 years ago."
Scarpinati suffered excruciating burns when she was just three months old when she rolled off a couch and landed on a boiling steam vaporizer. Over the subsequent years, she underwent numerous reconstructive surgeries.
Shortly after the accident, Amanda was photographed in a nurse's arms, her tiny head wrapped in gauze. The images appeared in the 1977 annual report for the Albany Medical Center in New York.
Amanda always wondered about the nurse's identity and wanted to thank her, The Associated Press reported.
"Growing up as a child, disfigured by the burns, I was bullied and picked on, tormented," she said. "I'd look at those pictures and talk to her, even though I didn't know who she was. I took comfort looking at this woman who seemed so sincere, caring for me."
So she recently turned to Facebook for help and posted a plea to help her track down the woman. Less than 24 hours later, someone identified the nurse as Susan Berger, who was just 21 at the time the photos were taken.
Caring for the baby also had a lasting impact on the nurse because Amanda was one of her first patients right out of college.
Susan told INSIDE EDITION: "She was an amazing little patient to be so calm and so trusting and so alert and attentive at her age having been through what she went through - she had to have been in pain - yet here she was."
The two women had an emotional reunion at the Albany Medical Center on Tuesday.
"She's real," Amanda told IE. "She's not actually just a picture anymore, she's real."
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