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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Woman Buries Mother 15 Years Ago – Turns Up ALIVE

Sulaiman Kamal | 6:27 AM | | | | | | | Best Blogger Tips

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There’s a shocking new twist in a 40-year old mystery, a case of mistaken identity that is bringing a woman long thought dead, back to life.

”I’m in shock”, said Grace Kivisto after hearing the news from a Galesburg detective Thursday morning.

”She just left one day, she would usually return eventually. But we never heard a thing”, said Kivisto, who was 15 at the time her mom disappeared.
Jacksonville (Duval, Florida) Her mother, Lula Cora Hood went missing back in 1970.
But in 1996, police called the family. Human remains were found in a Galesburg brickyard. Bad news.
”They said that it was her. But they couldn’t do DNA at the time, because it wasn’t that advanced yet”, Kivisto recalled.
”Cora” as she was called, was assumed dead, and buried.
”We had a memorial service”, said Kivisto.
”I just decided she’s with God now”, said Bernadine Collis, Cora’s niece.
But two years ago, the family offered DNA to investigators, now that the technology was there to definitely identify the family connection. Last week, stunned to learn, the remains were female. But not Cora.
”We were back to square one”, said Kivisto, who was adopted by relatives after her mom went missing.
Until Thursday morning.
”I was out gardening, and a detective came to tell me that they had found my mother. Alive. In Jacksonville, Florida!”, she said, surprised by her tears after all these years.
After Cora was ruled out by DNA Galesburg Police Sgt. Jason Landers re-opened the investigation last week. Using the internet, he launched a search for Lula Cora Hood, using her first and middle name and date of birth.
Police say a match was found in Florida, and after investigators interviewed the now 84-year old woman, they are convinced the real Cora has been found.
”It’s a miracle”, says Collis, crying just thinking about seeing her long, lost aunt again after 40 years. ”We were real close. I’m hoping she’ll come back and be family again. I’ll do everything in my power to help her”.
The family says Cora had left after a family feud, and never returned, not even for her children. She went on to have as many as 14, and dealt with mental health issues her adult life.
After believing she was dead, and now alive, her daughter just wants to re-unite.
”I’m going to see her as soon as I can”, she said. “”I can’t believe it!”.
Police say they don’t know who the female was found in the brickyard 15 years ago. That is still a mystery.


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