Can you imagine mourning your mother’s death, burying her and trying to move on only to realize she was alive the entire time?
It’s what Grace Kivistro of Illinois is dealing with right now.
“I’m in shock,” the Galesburg, Ill., woman told local TV station WQAD after hearing the astonishing news from a detective last week.
Kivisto’s mother, Lula Cora Hood, disappeared amid a family feud in 1970. Hood, who had 14 kids, suffered from mental health problems and had left the family many times, but always came home.
But in 1970 she never came back. The family never heard a thing. Fourteen children left without a mother.
Fast forward more than 25 years. In 1996 police informed the family that they found human remains, believed to be Lula Hood. The family held a memorial service and buried the remains.
Cut to 2009. The family gives DNA samples to investigators so they can officially confirm the body they buried was in fact Lula Hood.
Guess what? Last week they learned it wasn’t a match.
That discovery inspired police to reopen the cold case of Hood’s disappearance. Amazingly they were able to track Hood to an 84-year-old woman who lives in Florida whom they believe is Lula Hood. All this time she was right there. I’m guessing she doesn’t want to be found.
Hood’s daughter is eager to reunite. “I’m going to see her as soon as I can,” she said. “I can’t believe it!”
14 kids? I’m thinking no wonder she took off! Just kidding. Kind of. Okay, I’m not really kidding at all. So far, no word on the big reunion that Hood’s children are hoping for.