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Reunited brother and sister were living only 300 yards apart - Jan 04, 2013







Ken now 64 and Yvonne aged 62, aged around five and seven  Photo: MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS

A brother and sister who have been reunited after nearly 40 years discovered they had been living only 300 yards from each other.

Ken Whitty, 64, had even walked past his younger sister Yvonne's house and had seen her in her garden, never knowing they were related.

Mr Whitty and his sister grew up together, but their parents died when they were young and they were placed into the care of a family friend.

They stayed in touch after Mr Whitty left home at 21. But they lost contact when he went to visit her house and found it had been demolished in a slum clearance programme. Both then went their separate ways.

Mr Whitty became a joiner, met and married his wife Carolyn and had four children and six grandchildren.

His sister also married and had four children and 10 grandchildren.

After several failed attempts to contact his sister down the years, Mr Whitty wrote to the Manchester Evening News before Christmas asking for help.

He said: "I thought, it is Christmas, I am 65 next year and I have got to do something. I just had to do it this year. I did not even know if Yvonne was still alive."

When Mr Whitty's letter was published he received a telephone call from an old school friend and five minutes later the telephone rang again and the voice said: "Hello, this is Yvonne".

Brother and sister Ken and Yvonne Whitty now  Photo: MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS

"It happened just like that", said Mr Whitty. "I could not believe it." But he was even more astonished to discover his sister had been living so close to his home in Stockport, Greater Manchester.

Mr Whitty added: "I have walked past her house lots of times and I have even seen her in the garden. I have walked past her in the street and never realised it was my sister."

His sister said: "It is so nice to see Ken again. It has been such a long time. I am amazed that we have been living so close. It is so overwhelming."

Mr Whitty's daughter Nicola Dawes said: "It has been the only thing my dad has wanted for a long time."

They pair plan to visit the grave of their father George, an engineer who died in 1952 and their mother Mary, who died five years later.

By Richard Savill


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