In 1948, Elizabeth Pullen did what a lot of mothers had to do begrudgingly in the past, give up their kid for adoption. Pullen and her husband’s had to give up their first child for adoption, and at the time, Pullen never thought she would see the baby girl again. And while she went on to have seven other kids, she never quite gave up hope that she would see her lost daughter again.
Here is the bittersweet story of how Pullen was reunited with her adopted daughter after 70 years apart, and it all started with a DNA test.
It All Started with DNA Kits
For Christmas, Wanda LeBlanc’s mother gave her kids DNA kits. One thing led to another and before she knew it, Leblanc had gotten the results back, stating that her closet relative was 70-year old Lynne Wray, who had also taken the DNA test.
Making a Connection
Clicking on Wray’s name, LeBlanc learned that the unknown relative was adopted. At first, LeBlanc thought she might be her aunt, but after talking to her grandmother Pullen, she discovered that Wray was actually her grandmother’s lost daughter. The final proof was when Pullen found out Wray’s birthday, which matched up with the date on which her long lost daughter was born.
According to LeBlanc, “A part of the adoption process in the ’40s is if a woman is giving birth and was giving the baby up for adoption, they were not allowed to see the baby. So my grandmother actually never saw Lynne when she delivered Lynne.”
A Meeting is Arranged
Pullen called her daughter on the phone. The first words out of her mouth were, “I’m your mother, you’re my daughter, and I love you.”
Both Pullen and Wray had been searching for each other for years. LeBlanc, who is a wedding photographer, also was there when they reunited. In fact, it was her idea to only have them turn around and see each other for the first time once they were back to back.
Wray flew from her home state of North Carolina a month after making that initial connection to meet her mother, who lived in Louisiana. As Pullen turned around to see her daughter for the first time, she knew this was her daughter.
According to Wray, “To turn around and see somebody that looks just like you, it was pretty exciting. I felt total love. It couldn’t have been any better.”
Pullen was happy to finally meet the daughter she had given up all those years ago, “I looked at her face, and I knew that’s my baby.” She further added, “I feel so blessed. I didn’t give her away. I let her go for awhile. And when you give a gift of love, you get it returned a thousand times.”
What Might not Have been
Wray said the only reason that this whole event happened was because of the DNA kit she completed four years prior as a part of her medical history. If she hadn’t taken the test in she might have never gotten to meet her birth mother.
The testing involved in DNA kits is one way to determine if you have any unknown relatives or not. Of course, a DNA kit cannot help if the birth parent or adopted child has no desire to meet their lost relative.
A Meeting of Mother and Daughter After 70 Years
And while not everyone is comfortable meeting someone they were separated from long ago, these two were thrilled with the idea. Now that they have met, there are plans for both families to meet at some point during the summer. Here is the sweet video of mother and daughter meeting for the first time.
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