PLYMOUTH, N.C. (WITN) - It is hard for many to imagine a world without their families, but an Eastern Carolina woman searched for decades to find her sister. Now, the sisters are finally back together.
Patricia Rivera and Ann Nobles embraced for the first time after decades of being separated.
Saturday was a day of firsts as they celebrated with both sides of the family, looking through photos, even wearing matching t-shirts.
The sister were separated because of issues at home. Patricia Rivera was put up for adoption at six months old in Florida. Ann Nobles was two-years-old when she was sent to live with family members in Eastern Carolina.
Laws on adoption records made it difficult for them to reconnect over the years.
Nobles and Rivera were discouraged at times, but when Rivera was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer last year, her daughters knew they had to try one more time.
After combing online ancestry records, DNA matching and working with an adoptee search site, Rivera found her sister living in Plymouth.
"It's very bittersweet," Nobles said.
As happy as the sister are to finally meet, there is still someone missing from this reunion. Their brother died last year before he could meet Rivera.
Now the family is enjoying every moment together, as Rivera continues to fight cancer.
"Girl you're stuck with me," Nobles said.
"Oh you're stuck with me too," Rivera said.