After two babies were switched at birth 39 years ago in Moldova, their families found out the truth in October.
The mothers of Valentina Suman and Tatyana Muradyan were put in the same hospital room on March 27, 1978, but when nurses removed the babies to give them a bath, they reportedly returned the girls to the wrong mothers.
After Suman and Muradyan left the hospital, they both had trouble eating and would constantly cry for the first few months, but neither mother suspected it was because the babies were not theirs.
Anatoliy Lashtur, the son of Vera and Nikolay Lashtur, said his family had always heard rumors that the sister he grew up with, Tatyana Muradyan, may be another woman’s child, but they initially brushed the rumors off.
It wasn’t until 1999 when the Lashtur family was getting ready to move to the U.S. that they began to take the rumors seriously. A neighbor that knew both families approached them about the switch.
“She knew us. She knew the other family and she knew that both kids were having problems after the hospital,” Lashtur told InsideEdition.com. “As they grew up, I guess she could tell that the other kid looked a lot like our family and the kid that we had looked like their family.”
The Lashtur family decided to look for the other family before they left the country, but couldn’t find them before they relocated to the U.S.
When the family, who are now spread apart between North Carolina and Ohio, would return to Moldova over the years, however, they would still search for the family. In August, the searching paid off.
A neighbor was able to give the family a name — Valentina Suman.
Lashtur’s sister, Tatyana Muradyan, who he grew up with, and his younger sister, Victoria Tereschuk, searched the name on Facebook and found a match.
After asking Suman her birthplace and age, Muradyan asked her to send over baby pictures. Upon seeing the pictures, the Lashtur family was pretty sure the rumors had been true. Suman looked like their family.
In October, after Suman contacted a Russian television show that does DNA tests, Lashtur was able to meet his long-lost sister for the first time. The DNA test confirmed the rumors.
Muradyan was also able to meet her biological mother on the show after 39 years. Sadly, Muradyan’s biological father died just before she got a chance to meet him.
“We went backstage and met the first time and we hugged and cried. It was one of those experiences that you know doesn’t happen a lot and when it does, you’ll never forget it. Everybody was crying,” Lashtur said.
Valentina Suman and her biological mother Vera Lashtur
Lashtur said he now talks to his biological sister every day and hopes to bring her to the U.S. soon. The family has started a GoFundMe to help with the costs. Muradyan hopes to do the same thing for her biological mother.
Lashtur said the love he has for Muradyan will never change.
“I talked to her and I told her nothing changes between us. The only difference is I gain a sister. We are brother and sister. We love her and nothing is ever going to change that,” Lashtur said.
Left: Tatyana Muradyan, Victoria Tereschuk, Valentina Suman, Anatoliy Lashtur