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Daughter finally meeting father after 60 years: 'I about fell out of my chair'

Sandy Lung was born in Taiwan. She is now 60, living in Hawaii. She's spent the last 50 years searching for her father.{ } This is a photo taken in 1957 of her mother, herself, and her father is cut out.{ } She's spent almost her whole life finding that missing piece of her life (Liz Cooper/WPDE)

An unforgettable family reunion has been 60 years in the making.

Sandy Lung was born in Taiwan. She is now 60, living in Hawaii. She's spent the last 50 years searching for her father.

"I would ask mom questions and she should would just give me bits and pieces and she said she just didn't remember," said Lung.

A photo from 1957 is all Lung had to remember her father. It was taken in Taiwan, a few months after she was born. Her mother is on the left, and her father, on the right, was cut out from the photo.

"I had hope because I knew that he knew of me," said Lung.

Until she was 9 years old, she was told her father died before she was born. Her search to find that missing face started after she stumbled on the picture in her mother's things.

"Whatever resources were out there, I started looking for him," she said. "I would write to people and call."

The search hasn't been easy. She said she's thought about him on and off at different times in her life. She often wondered if he thought about her too.

"Every time I would pass by somebody like an older man, I wonder, could that be him?" she explained.

After almost giving up two years ago, she decided to turn to Ancestry DNA. She connected with a distant cousin on her father's side in June 2017.

"We had to really work at it," she said, about finding family connections through the website.

It took them four months to find that missing piece from Lung's photo. Lung said that time went by very quickly.

"She got my father's phone number and said, 'Are you ready for this?'" she said, explaining her cousin's findings.

In September, her cousin reached out to 80-year-old Skip Roberts, who lives in North Myrtle Beach.

"She said she's going to call you on the phone, your daughter," said Roberts, about his cousin who contacted him. Roberts hadn't known this cousin until she called him that first time.

"I called him and I heard hello. And I said, Daddy?" said Lung, as she recalled that first phone call with her father.

Roberts said he was shocked to hear from his daughter after all these years.

"I about fell off the chair," he said, when he heard her voice.

Roberts was in the Navy when he was teenager. He met Lung's mother when he was stationed in Taiwan in 1956. Shortly after Lung was born, he left Taiwan and continued his deployment.

"It's pretty rough leaving somebody when they're four months old," he said. "I thought about her all the time."

He never told anyone about Lung, as he feared he would never see her again.

"I gave her my address I had on ship and I never got a letter from her," he said, about Lung's mother. He said it must have been difficult for her to write to him since she didn't speak much English.

Now, Lung lives in Hawaii with her mother.

"Getting to know him over the phone, I realized he had been thinking about me through the years," said Lung.

And their story doesn't end here--Lung is actually flying to the Grand Strand this Saturday to finally meet her father face-to-face for the first time.

If you would like to help Lung along her journey, she has a GoFundMe page set up.

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