Amanda Scarpinati cherished her old black-and-white photograph of a nurse holding her as an infant for decades.
The photograph was taken in 1977 in a New York hospital following Amanda’s severe accident. Amanda, who was only three months old at the time, fell from the sofa onto a hot-steam humidifier, sustaining third-degree burns. The little girl’s head is wrapped in gauze as the nurse tries to comfort her in the photograph.
In the subsequent years, due to her appearance, Amanda underwent a number of operations and was bullied by her classmates. When Amanda was having a terrible day, she would retrieve the photograph of the nurse. Knowing that there was once a person who cared so deeply for her brought her comfort.
Amanda maintained the hope that she would one day locate her guardian angel. She searched for twenty years before deciding to use social media as a last resort.
The subsequent events are incredibly heartwarming. I couldn’t resist sharing this fascinating story!
Amanda Scarpinati, who was 3 months old and suffering from third-degree burns, was rushed by ambulance to the Albany Medical Center in New York in 1977. She had fallen off the sofa and into a humidifier emitting hot steam.
She was cared for at the hospital by a young nurse. The photographs from that year depict her holding Amanda in her arms and smiling affectionately at her.
Due to her burns, Amanda was subjected to unending bullying throughout her childhood. Fortunately, she recovered from the incident.
“Growing up as a child, disfigured by the burns, I was bullied and picked on, tormented,” Amanda tells news agency AP. “‘I’d look at those pictures and talk to her, even though I didn’t know who she was. I took comfort looking at this woman who seemed so sincere caring for me.”
Amanda hoped that she would one day be able to locate the nurse who had comforted and cared for her during that difficult time. After 20 years of unsuccessful searching, Amanda turned to social media. She posted the black-and-white photographs on her Facebook page and wrote, “I would love to know her name and possibly get a chance to talk to her and meet her. Please share, as you never know who it could reach.”
Her post spread like wildfire, and the next day she received the long-awaited message. Angela Leary, who had worked as a nurse at the hospital during the same year, recognized Susan Berger as a former coworker. Susan was 21 years old and had recently graduated from college. She had also kept the photographs and never forgotten the child with burns.
“I remember her. She was very peaceful,” Susan remembers. “Usually when babies come out of surgery they’re sleeping or crying. She was just so calm and trusting. It was amazing.”
After 38 years, the pair had an emotional reunion shortly thereafter.
Susan says, “I don’t know how many nurses would be lucky enough to have something like this happen, to have someone remember you all that time.”
“I feel privileged to be the one to represent all the nurses who cared for Amanda over the years.”
When I read this incredible story, especially in light of everything Amanda has endured, I was so moved.