A black and white photograph of Amanda Scarpinati as a baby being held by a nurse was something she treasured for many years.
The photograph was shot in a New York City hospital in 1977, shortly after Amanda had been seriously injured in an accident. Amanda, only three months old at the time, suffered third-degree burns when she slipped off a sofa into a hot steam humidifier. The small girl’s head is bandaged in the shot while the nurse tries to reassure her.
Amanda went through multiple surgeries and suffered from bullying at school because of her appearance throughout the next few years. Amanda would look at the black-and-white picture of the nurse whenever she was having a bad day. Knowing someone had once cared so deeply about her was solace for her.
Amanda never gave up on the idea that she would someday meet her guardian angel. After 20 years of looking in vain, she decided to give social media one more shot.
What followed is very heartwarming. This was too interesting not to tell!
In 1977, when Amanda Scarpinati was just three months old, she suffered third-degree burns and was evacuated by ambulance to the Albany Medical Center in New York. She was injured when she landed on a humidifier that released scorching steam.
In the hospital, a young nurse attended to her needs. Pictures from that year’s black and white picture shoot show her with Amanda in her arms and a warm smile on her face.
Attacked with relentless bullying
Amanda was bullied relentlessly because of her burns throughout her youth, but she eventually recovered.
Disfigured by the burns, Amanda says, “I was harassed and picked on and tormented” as a child. “Even though I had no idea who she was, I would look at the photographs and try to communicate with her. In her seemingly genuine concern for me, I found solace.”
In the future, Amanda planned to track down the nurse who had cared for her and comforted her during that trying period. Amanda finally resorted to social media after a 20-year search yielded no results. She posted the photographs to Facebook with the caption, “I would want to know her identity and get an opportunity to chat with her and meet her. If it would help someone else, please spread the word.”
Catch on like wildfire
The news of her post quickly spread, and the next day she finally received the message she had been anxiously awaiting. Former hospital nurse Angela Leary recognized Susan Berger as a coworker from the same year she had worked there. Susan, who was 21 then, had recently graduated from university. She, too, kept the photographs and never forgot the young victim of burns.
The words “I remember her,” are used. Susan recalls that “she was really calm. Babies typically either sleep or cry after they are brought out of surgery. Something was reassuring about her demeanor and trusting nature. What happened was incredible.”
The two were reunited shortly after that, and their emotional reunion after 38 years was a big deal.
Susan says, “I don’t know how many nurses would be blessed to have anything like this happen, to have someone remember you all that time.”
“It’s an honor to speak for all the nurses who have helped Amanda through the years.”
I was overcome with emotion when I read this beautiful story, especially after learning of all that Amanda has been through.
If you agree that nurses worldwide care for patients in their time of need, please consider sharing this article. They are fantastic in every way.