A mother and daughter met for the first time after nearly 70 years.
When then 18-year-old Genevieve Purinton gave birth at an Indiana hospital 69 years ago, doctors told her the baby girl had died.
Decades later, Purinton, now 88, got the shock of her life earlier this fall when she found out that was lie.
Connie Moultroup had always known she was adopted but all she knew of her birth mother was her name. She moved with her adoptive parents to California after her birth, where she grew up.
“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 said.
She added, however, that she always wondered about who her birth mother was.
“I remember being 5 years old and hoping that my real mother was going to come rescue me,” Moultroup said.
Moultroup, now 69, searched for her mom briefly in her 30s, to no avail, she said. That all changed at Christmastime 2017, however, when one of her two daughters gifted her with an ancestry test. When she finally got the results, she said she went from having three blood relatives to nearly 1,600.
One of the people on the list was her first cousin, who reached out to Moultroup.
“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 recalled. “It was awesome, but I didn’t know quite what to do with that.”
Moultroup’s cousin sent her aunt a card with her long-lost daughter's contact information, and in August, Purinton called her daughter for the first time.
“She said, 'I think I might be your mother.' I just about dropped my teeth,” Moultroup said.
She was so happy to finally hear the voice she’d longed to know as a child. The pair chatted for an hour and now their phone calls have become regular.
This past Monday, Moultroup flew from Vermont, where she lives, to Tampa, Florida, to meet her mom for the first time.
“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.”
It was God who brought them together, Moultroup added.
“In my eyes, [His] fingerprints are all over this.”