A Hartlepool family has been reunited after more than 30 years apart, after tracking down a long-lost relative through an heir hunting company.
Terry Hanlon, 53, had been searching for his cousin Jenny Keshav for years after losing touch three decades ago when part of the family moved to Margate, in Kent.
But earlier this month the family was brought together for the first time after Terry, from Bishop Cuthbert, contacted Hartlepool-based HeirHunter UK, which managed to discover Jenny’s whereabouts.
The company, based in Hartlepool’s Queens Meadow Business Park, undertakes free searches for families looking to be reunited with lost relatives.
Terry said just 30 minutes after contacting managing director Fraser Kinnie, he had the email address of his long-lost cousin Jenny Keshav in his hand.
The pair met this month, along with Terry’s mother Cath, 84, from Rift House, and Jenny’s daughter Gemma, 24.
Terry, a manager at Kier Group, spoke of his joy: “Every time we have a family get-together the conversation would always get around to ‘I wonder what happened to our Jenny’.
“We have tried numerous times to find her on social media and through old contacts we had but to no avail. Then I read about HeirHunter UK and sent them a message, Fraser called me straight away and actually did the search while I was on the phone.
“I was absolutely amazed how quickly he located her and how much information he had at his fingertips.”
The family discovered that Jenny’s father, John Robert Tebbett joined the Merchant Navy and moved to Margate, where he met Jenny’s mum, following an earlier marriage in which had two daughters.
Now 54, Jenny, who has four children and nine grandchildren, said growing up she lived with both her mum and dad following their split, and spent a short time in care.
She said: “I have just inherited an enormous family in Hartlepool. I am just so thankful to have met them all again.”