Connie was originally told that her mother had died after she gave birth to her in 1949, according to reports. We don't know what the motive was behind that lie, but all these years later, it has finally been revealed to be false.
Tampa resident Genevieve, 88, was alone when she gave birth at a hospital in Gary, Indiana, about 30 miles southeast from Chicago, according to The New York Times.
She was 18 years old at the time, and not married. She left high school when she became visibly pregnant but received her diploma in the mail on the same day she gave birth, she said.
"When I said I wanted to see the baby, they told me she died," Purinton told Fox Tampa affiliate WTVT.
Purinton did not argue or ask for a death certificate, she told the Times, blaming her youth for the mistake.
It's absolutely heartbreaking that both mother and daughter were lied to, and spent a lifetime living under a painful lie. However, it is truly heartwarming that the pair have now been reunited, all these years later.
The course of Purinton's life changed when the daughter she never met, 69-year-old Vermont resident Connie Moultroup took a DNA test for Ancestry.com, that led her to a cousin, and then to her birth mother.
Moultroup had been covertly adopted by a family in Southern California, who had told her they "walked up and down the aisles of the hospital until they found me and they just had to take me home," she told the Times.
A doctor who was working at the Indiana hospital where she was born had arranged the adoption, Moultroup discovered through documents she obtained from the Edmund D. Edelman Children’s Court in Los Angeles County. The Catholic hospital were Connie was born no longer exists.
Purinton's signature was on the adoption papers, but she told the Times, "I had no idea what I signed." At just 18 years of age, and presumably completely overwhelmed, it's no wonder that Genevieve didn't know what she was signing up for.
Mother and daughter met each other for the first time in Tampa earlier this month, and as you might expect, it was hugely emotional. It was the realization of a lifelong dream for Moultroup, who told WTVT that she had spent "a lifetime of wanting this."
"I remember being five years old and wishing that I could find my mother," she said.
There is no bond like that between parent and child, and when they met, the connection was almost "instantaneous." Among their similarities are a penchant for cooking and crochet, according to the Times.
Watch CNN's report on this amazing story below:
This story takes particular significance, as before she and her daughter reunited, Purinton thought she was the last surviving member of her immediate family, she told WTVT. Her brothers and sisters had died, and she never had any children after 1949, she told the local station.
But, with the discovery of a living daughter, Purinton also learned that she has a granddaughter and two great grandchildren, to her great delight. Moultroup also learned that she has two half-sisters from her biological father, whom she plans to meet in due course.
It's a bittersweet story, considering the lies that were told to the pair, but I'm so glad they were finally reuinted all these years later. Here's to many more happy years together for Genevieve and Connie.