WALTERBORO, S.C. (AP) — An 18-year-old woman abducted from a Florida hospital hours after her birth has met her biological parents for the first time.
Kamiyah Mobley met her birth parents on Saturday at the police department in Walterboro, the South Carolina city where she was raised under a false name, multiple media outlets reported. Walterboro is 50 miles west of Charleston.
Craig Aiken said after the 45-minute meeting he is still in shock about suddenly being reunited with his long-lost daughter, but their first meeting couldn’t have gone better.
“The first meeting was beautiful. It was wonderful,” Aiken said. “It’s hard to put into words right now. We are just trying to process it — 18 years. It’s going to be hard to make that up. I just can’t describe it.”
Mobley was only eight hours old in 1998 when she was taken from a Jacksonville, Florida, hospital by a woman posing as a nurse. A massive search and thousands of tips produced nothing until DNA evidence proved Mobley’s lineage.
Police this week charged Gloria Williams, 51, of Walterboro with kidnapping. She will be extradited to Florida to face charges.
Williams had raised as Mobley as her daughter and named her Alexis Manigo.
Aiken said it’s not yet clear what’s next for his family, and Kamiyah will decide whether or not she will visit Florida. He said he would tell other parents with missing children to keep hope alive.
“Just keep praying, keep fighting, if it happened to me, it can happen to anybody,” he said.