Reunited after 52 years
10th of October, 2010
Brampton resident finds lost British cousin on the net - but can't afford to visit her
A Brampton woman with cancer has found a long-lost British cousin online, her condition prompting her urgent search for relatives.
Shiela Kelly, 68 from Brampton used the people-finding website 192.com to find her cousin in England who she last saw in 1958 at a wedding in the UK.
"I wanted to reconnect with my family, and find out about them while I still can. A friend of mine died from cancer last year. She used to tell wonderful stories. I told her you've got to leave some stories for your boys, and that's what I'm doing."
Shiela had little understanding of computers and found her cousin by chance:
"I only use a computer for pretty limited tasks at work, and had to borrow an old one from a friend at home. I just started putting her name in and I stumbled across 192.com-it was chance really."
192.com contains millions of records of UK residents, and although Mrs Kelly found her English cousin Joan Morton within a few clicks, though had searched the internet for months; beginning her search in December 2009, making contact with Joan in June this year.
"I was really excited to find she was still at the same address and that she was actually there after such a long time."
"I was really nervous when I first called her. I knew she would be a lot older, and I couldn't be sure she would remember me."
"When I asked Joan if she remembered who I was, she said, 'off course I remember you I'm sitting here with a big smile on my face!"
Joan Morton, 75, of Durham, England said: "It's quite funny that Shiela has a Canadian accent but I like it."
"It was lovely when she called, just lovely. She was just a small girl the last time I saw her and we had completely lost touch. She said she found me on the internet, I wouldn't have understood if she had tried to explain exactly how - the whole thing is double-dutch to me."
Shiela Kelly told 192.com the pair keep in regular contact: "I write and telephone. I would love to and see Joan but I never have the money."
Shiela, who works part-time in the city transit authority was born in Brampton after her father, William Kelly emigrated from England in 1930. After moving to Canada, he worked as a foreman on the doomed Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow fighter jet which was controversially scrapped in 1958.
Dominic Blackburn, Product Director of 192.com said: "We're delighted Shelia found her cousin through 192.com. It really is as source of immense pride here that we can help people all over the world find friends and family in the UK.
"192.com has access to millions of residential and business records in the UK, including access to the edited electoral roll, so if you're looking for someone in the UK we're a great place to start."
Shiela got in touch with 192.com after the website asked users to tell them about their reunion stories. Some searches can by conducted for free, though users have to purchase 192.com credits to search the UK's edited electoral roll.
192.com is the UK's most awarded online directory, helping find people, businesses and places for millions of users every month. On 192.com, users can search over 700 million records including free directory enquiries, edited electoral roll information, local business listings, interactive mapping, aerial photography and property reports.
Conducted by One Poll, nationally representative online poll of 1,500 between July 23 and July 28 2010. Results were broken down by age and region.
Robin Kramer, Ph.D, MA (oxon) MSc, BA (hons)
Evolutionary Psychologist at Bangor University specializing in signalling of information and social interaction. Triple scholar, having studied at Oxford University, Washington and Lee University, Virginia , the University of Sussex and the Precepts and Concepts Laboratory Indiana University. Publications: Kramer, R. S. S., & Ward, R. (2010). Internal facial features are signals of personality and health. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. Advance online publication. Kramer, R., & Ward, R. (2010). Looking healthy may win you elections. PsyPAG Quarterly, 75, 12-16. Kramer, R. S. S., Arend, I., & Ward, R. (2010).
For more information contact the 192.com Press Office.