Davina McCall and Nicky Campbell have been our expert guides through the emotional landscape of Long Lost Family, and in episode six the team succeeds again in reuniting families and healing old wounds.
Helen Salmon and Colin Deering
Colin and Helen’s mother, Nellie Dixon, was a music hall performer. Nellie had Colin in 1943 and several years later, she retired from show business and settled down in Manchester to raise him. In 1949 she married and Helen was born two years later.
Helen always felt that Nellie missed the stage, and that there was a sense of missing out when she gave up show business. Helen hadn’t realized there was something more missing from her mother’s life.
Colin remembers finding his mother crying while looking at an old photograph of a child that she kept hidden. It was his brother Bryan. Nellie clearly carried a lot of regret for her decision to give him up.
Nellie passed away more than 40 years ago. Colin and Helen have longed to fulfill her dying wish for them to find their missing brother. Now 70 years old, Colin hopes that the Long Lost Family team can locate Bryan.
Stephen Haywood and Sheila Andrews
Life has not been easy for 52 year old Stephen. He lives in Cornwall with his partner Jan, two daughters and his grandson. He has put many things on hold and has avoided celebrating life’s milestones until he finds his birth mother. He even decided not to marry until he finds her.
Given up for adoption at birth, Stephen grew up in Australia with his adoptive parents, Constance and Anthony. When the family returned to the UK, Stephen found it hard to fit in as a teenager in a new country. It was this difficult period that led him to think about his birth mother.
Stephen’s adoption file reveals that his mother’s name is Sheila Andrews and that she had given him the name Stephen. Davina McCall, Nicky Campbell and the Long Lost Family team take on the search for Stephen’s birth mother.
As always the reunions are emotional and the participants joy at finding their loved ones is uplifting and inspirational. That’s the power of Long Lost family.
About Brian Gallagher
Brian is the International Social Media Specialist for Ancestry, working closely with our United Kingdom, Sweden, German and Australian teams.