Norfolk bride-to-be is reunited with her father on ITV1 show Long Lost Family
A Norfolk bride-to-be has been reunited with her father after more than 20 years thanks to an ITV1 programme hosted by Davina McCall and Nicky Campbell.
Naomi Wilson last saw her American father Uryalus Neal when she was five and was desperate to introduce him to her ten-month-old son, James, before her big day.
The 26-year-old, from Runcton Holme, near Downham Market said: 'I've got everything I've ever dreamed of, the perfect partner, the perfect son. The one thing that has been missing out of my life is my dad. And I'd like to think I wasn't a child that he's forgotten about.'
Tonight's episode of Long Lost Family traces Naomi's father to Houston, Texas, where he now lives with a wife and daughter.
It emerges that her mother, Linda, married Uryalus in America in 1983 and the pair made a home in New York. Two years, later Linda fell pregnant and moved back to Norfolk, while Uryalus was posted to an airbase in Suffolk.
The relationship soon deteriorated and the couple separated. Uryalus remained with the US Air Force for the next five years, but in the early 1990s he moved back to America.
Uryalus stayed in contact with Naomi by telephone and sent birthday and Christmas cards. He visited her when she was five shortly before he returned to the US - but it was to be the last time she heard from him.
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'I remember him holding my hand,' Naomi said. 'And his hands were huge. I remember feeling as though no one else mattered. I'll remember that feeling forever.'
Uryalus bought his daughter some red wellington boots and she treasured them for years as her only connection to her father.
'I have no idea what happened,' she said. 'No phone calls, no letters, no nothing.'
When Long Lost Family tells Uryalus - now using the name Vandory - that Naomi has been searching for him, he is overjoyed.
They decide to meet in Downham Market where they spent their last day together.
The episode airs on ITV1 at 9pm tonight (Thursday).