Long-lost sisters reunited after 55 years discover they are TWINS
Jenny Lucas and Helen Edwards, both 64, were separated at birthThey had no knowledge of each other until Jenny tracked down her birth mother after being given up for adoption
DNA tests confirmed they were non-identical twins
20:02 GMT, 6 December 2012
Long-lost sisters, who were reunited after 55 years apart, have discovered that they are in fact twins, separated at birth.
Jenny Lucas and Helen Edwards, both 64, had no knowledge of each other after Jenny was given up for adoption until she tracked down her birth mother in 2003.
When the pair met, they assumed they were half-sisters but were regularly surprised by their similarities such as the way they held their coffee cups and they would often go to call each other at the same time.
Separated at birth: Jenny Lucas (right) and Helen Edwards (left) discovered they were long-lost twin sisters who have been reunited 55 years later
A DNA test in 2009 confirmed that they were full sisters but, still confused by their past they looked deeper into their late mother’s medical records only to discover that she had given birth to two babies on December 2, 1948, the date of Jenny’s birthday.
Helen, from Morpeth, Northumberland, had always thought she was born on April 4, 1950, but medical records showed there had been no birth that day.
Baffled by the mystery, the women believed that the second baby born on Jenny's birthday had most likely died but recent DNA tests have now confirmed that the sisters are actually non-identical twins.
Whole childhood apart: Helen (pictured left at about two-years-old with father Wilfred Harrison) and Jenny (pictured right aged about 18-months-old with her adoptive parents) were separated when Jenny was given up for adoption
The ‘difficult’ discovery means Helen is actually 64-years-old, when she believed she was 62.
Speaking today the sisters said the revelation left them with many unanswered questions about why there were separated at birth.
But the sisters said they are ‘happy’ to finally have each other and have an explanation for the incredible similarities they share despite spending their whole lives apart.
Retired surgical assistant, Helen, said: ‘I have been lied to about my birth all my life.
‘All the big dates in my life, like my 21st birthday, have been false.
‘This has been an incredible shock and it has been a very difficult time.
‘Jenny and I have gone through a real rollercoaster with this whole story. Discovering we were twins was happy news but a real shock.
'Difficult' discovery: Helen (right aged 18-years-old with mother) thought she was born on April 4, 1950 but discovered there had been no birth that day but two babies were born on December 2, 1948 – Jenny's birthday
‘For twins to be separated at birth is hugely emotional, but does go some way to explain the similarities between us. We were brought up differently but are so alike.’
Jenny, a former professional golfer, from Tenterden, Kent, said: ‘Our mother’s medical records showed she had had five children, but all had been home births apart from the one in December, 1948, when she had been in hospital for 11 days which must have been because she had twins.
‘It was a huge shock to realise that I was in actual fact a twin but in many ways it made a lot of sense.
‘We are very alike, we have the same mannerisms, we hold our coffee cups the same way, we mirror each other on the little things – even when we first met.
‘We both have Chihuahua dogs too.’
Jenny, who discovered she was adopted when she was 14, began to search for her birth family in 1981.
Having found her birth-aunt through her birth certificate, she was told her mother did not want to meet her because ‘too much water had passed under the bridge’.
So alike: Jenny and Helen said the revelation was emotionally difficult but it explained their many similarities, despite growing up apart
Disheartened she went ahead with a move to Florida, in America with her husband Sam.
When she returned to Britain in 2003, her cousin had managed to find her biological mother’s address.
The mother-of-three plucked up the courage to visit her and was welcomed with open arms by her mother, who showered her with hugs and kisses.
During the meeting, Jenny was told by her mother she must leave suddenly because her daughter Helen would be home soon, so she returned to America intrigued by the idea of a sister.
When Jenny permanently moved back to the UK in 2007, her birth mother had passed away, leaving behind a death certificate listing Helen as her next of kin.
Jenny tacked her down on social networking website Friends Reunited.
The sisters, who believed they were born in wedlock, say they still have no idea why Jenny was put up for adoption and Helen was kept.