For 40 years, nobody had any idea where Holly Marie Clouse was.
She was just a baby when here newly married parents, Harold and Tina Clouse, were murdered and dumped in the woods.
People knew Holly existed, of course, but with no sign of her remains there was always hope that she was still alive.
Harold and Tina, who were just 21 and 17 years old, disappeared while moving from Florida to Texas.
Their bodies were discovered in a wooded area in Houston in January 1981, but their identity was not known until 2021 when a DNA test linked them to relatives in Kentucky.
Family history detectives were then called in and found 42-year-old Holly living in Oklahoma with her five children.
The first she knew about her biological family history was when police turned up at her workplace on Tuesday – what would have been her father’s 63rd birthday.
She met some of her blood relatives for the first time online that same day and is planning to meet up with them in person soon.
Holly’s grandmother Donna Casasanta said that finding her ‘is a birthday present from heaven’.
She said: ‘I prayed for more than 40 years for answers and the Lord has revealed some of it… we have found Holly.
‘Thank you to all of the investigators for working so hard to find Holly. I prayed for them day after day and that they would find Holly and she would be alright… We will be forever grateful.’
Detective Steve Wheeler said: ‘It’s one of the most meaningful things I’ve ever been a part of.
‘It’s a once in a lifetime thing to play even a small part in reuniting a family after 40 years.’
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