A pensioner from Tunbridge Wells received the ‘shock of her life’ last week after meeting her sister for the very first time.
Mary Hunter, 88, said she felt ‘absolutely incredible’ after her sister, Olive Busby, 76, arrived in the UK on Monday October 17.
After being offered up for adoption in 1928, Mary never met her mother, or even knew her name for much of her life. Then she discovered a previous address for her in Portsmouth and went to see if anyone knew of her. She learned that her mother had remarried with children and emigrated to Australia many years previously.
Knowing that she must have a sibling down under, Mary decided to ‘let it lie for a while, since I didn’t want to just turn up and give her such a shock at that age’.
But earlier this year, her daughter Catherine discovered a phone number and address for Olive online and they decided to call.
“When I was speaking to her for the first time, I just couldn’t quite believe it. She wanted to come over immediately,” said Mary who lives in Pembury Road.
Since arriving, Olive said she and Mary had ‘an immediate connection’ and have since been ‘catching up on all the family news’.
And from their first conversation, the younger sibling had no doubt in her mind that they were related: “I asked how tall she was and when she said 4ft 11in, that’s when I knew we must be siblings because I’m 4ft 6in,” said Olive.
Living in Byford, a suburb of Perth, since 1969, Olive said she has enjoyed being shown around ‘beautiful Tunbridge Wells’ during her visit.