Sisters Reunite After 64 Years of Separation
Six decades had passed since half sisters Carol Greene and Betty Coll last saw each other. The sisters were ripped apart as children and never met again until recently. After 64 years the sisters wondered why they hadn’t tried to reunite earlier.
Greene’s father became ill with tuberculosis in 1951. His terminal illness was taxing on her mother and she could not care for her four children and give them the attention and provision they required.
“My mother always told us that she had four children, but she had to give them up for adoption,” said Coll. “Her husband … had TB and she could not take care of them.”
“She said she wished she could keep them, but she couldn’t afford to,” added Greene’s aunt, Verna Gabriel.
Their mother made a measly wage working at a local silk mill. She decided it was best to give up her children for adoption to care for her terminally ill husband and give her children a better life.
“I was adopted at the age of six,” said Greene.
Greene never saw her mother and siblings again. She grew up, attended college, married and life went on, but somewhere in the back of her mind she longed to see her siblings again.
“There was always a lot of questions and not very many answers,” said Greene.
Greene’s son helped his mother with her plea and spent one full year researching public records. His determination paid off and Greene was elated to meet her long lost family.
He located Greene’s sister, Betty Coll, and arranged for the two to meet in Northampton Borough. The sisters recognized their mother’s cheekbones and connected as if they had never been separated.
“I can say now I’ve met my older sister,” said Coll. “I know who she is. I know her name, I know where she lives.”
The sisters are excited about the reunion but still longing to reunite with the rest of their siblings, two brothers and another sister, who were given up for adoption at the same time. They know their names, Richard, Robert and Dora Jane Malone, and that the brothers attended Muhlenberg College. They are said to have moved to Baltimore.
“Hopefully we can find the other two boys and the other girl and maybe we can get together as a family again,” said Coll.
Greene hoped she would reunite with her mother but sadly she passed away in 2009. Though she is happy to have found her sister, she regrets not looking for her mother years ago.
“I would have liked to have gone up to her and said, ‘I’m Carol Louise. I’m home. And you’re my mother.’”