Daughter Reunites With Her Father After 15 Years
Loureen Wafula refused to give up hope and never stopped searching for her father whom she last saw when she was six.
The now 21-year-old Kenyan woman has been trying for many years to piece together the scant information she had about her father, George Rutere, with no success.
Wafula’s mother, Pamela Amondi Wafula, who died in 2010, met Rutere in Eldoret town in 1991. Wafula was born a year later in a small village called Nalondo in Bungoma, Western Kenya. But her parents’ relationship did not last long after her mother found that Rutere had another wife.
“Although Rutere wanted to marry her, my mother declined, saying that she was not ready to become a second wife,” Wafula wrote on March 13 in a letter to Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper, detailing the search for her father. “My auntie, Maureen, tells me that my mother did not want to ruin another woman’s home.”
After falling out with with her mother, Wafula’s father told the newspaper that he paid a visit to Pamela to take his daughter with him, but her mother refused to give her up.
Wafula’s parents then lost contact after that final visit, and shortly afterwards, her father, who was a police officer, was transferred to Nairobi from Eldoret.
That was the last time that Wafula ever saw her father again.
“I know that he is somewhere out there, perhaps wondering if he will ever see me again, perhaps looking for me as well and wondering what I like doing,” Wafula said in the letter. “Dad, I like cooking, reading novels, and singing. Dad, if you are reading this, I want you to know that I miss you so much and I am dying to see you again. I want you to see how big your girl has grown. I have so much to share with you. Please reach out and meet me halfway.”
Little did she know that she will reunite with him two days later.
After her story was published in the national newspaper, a reader sent an email to the newsroom.
“I happen to know Rutere, whom you have referred to in your story,” the reader said. “He is a police officer in Chuka town, Meru. I have called him and he has confirmed the details given by [Wafula]. He is very eager to reach his daughter.”
A few minutes later, the newspaper received a second email from another reader.
“The man [Wafula] is looking for is my uncle,” Fridah Ngaku wrote. “He often talks about her, and even has a picture of her.”
Rutere’s niece gave the newspaper the phone number of her uncle. And the rest is history.
Fifteen years later, the search ended last Friday in the Kenyan town of Chogoria where Wafula reunited with her 49-year-old father for the first time. It was the end of many years of a long search.
Image courtesy of Daily Nation.