Coma Victim Who Lost Her Memory Reunited With Family After 50 Years

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

A New York woman who lost her memory after waking from a two-year coma was finally reunited with her family in Mississippi

Celestine Gandy Thompson’s family hadn’t heard from her in so long that they assumed she had passed away.

Gandy Thompson, 70, left Mississippi when she was a teenager and lived in Buffalo, N.Y., for more than 30 years. In 1992, she survived a fire that left her in a coma for almost two years. When she awoke, her memory was in tatters.

When she tried to recall her family, all the would pop into her head was one name: Clarence Woolard. Woolard is her nephew.

"The girl asked me, she said, 'how long has it been, and did you ever find any of your biological family.' I said, 'no baby, I wouldn't know where to start.' She said, ‘just give me a name,' and his name popped up in my head," said Thompson. "So she went into the phone and she found him, and that's just how this came together."

Woolard spread the word to the rest of the family that Gandy Thompson was alive and well.

After 50 years of separation, she reconnected with her family to find she has 23 nieces and nephews, 64 grand nieces and nephews, 66 great-grand nieces and nephews and 34 great-great-grand nieces and nephews, WLOX-TV reported.

"In our minds, me and my brother was talking that she wasn't here anymore, because we hadn't heard from her in so long," said her nephew Donald Davis. "You know, we were overwhelmed and overjoyed when we found out that we had gotten in contact with her."

"That was wonderful. I've been thinking about her and wondering would I ever see her again. Would I ever get in contact again, but I was overwhelmed when I heard from her," said her niece Helen Woodward. "I was joyful. I was very joyful."

"It's a blessing. I prayed for this day. That the good Lord would let me live long enough for this day to come together to be with my family again," said Gandy Thompson, who now lives in Greensboro, Ala.