A story of remarkable coincidences would seem unlikely at a nursing home but at The Palace Nursing and Rehab in Kendall, two employees share a coincidence that has reunited long-lost families.
Activities assistant Susana Jewell and nursing assistant Mectahylde Jeannot are both longtime Palace Nursing and Rehab employees. Jewell has worked for the community for 19 years while Jeannot has been there 16 years.
They knew each other and worked together helping the residents. One day, an aide told Jewell he was ordering food from a Dominican restaurant and asked if she wanted to place an order. Jewell is Dominican.
“You’re Dominican?” Jeannot asked Jewell.
Jewell laughed and said, “yes.”
Then Jeannot, who is Haitian, said, “I’ve been looking for my family from Dominican Republic.”
Jewell asked Jeannot for her family’s names.
Jeannot replied, “Dario and Ellia.”
“This can’t be,” Jewell exclaimed in disbelief. “These are the same names of my grandparents!”
Then Jeannot explained, “And they have a daughter named Mary.”
Jewell said, “That’s my mother!”
The two ladies were in absolute disbelief to discover they were cousins. For 10 years working at The Palace they never knew they were long-lost second cousins.
Jeannot brought Jewell a picture from a family gathering she had from a vacation visiting the Dominican Republic to show her pictures of the family.
Jewell recalls when she got home and told her mother (who lives with her) who she just met at The Palace, her mother was equally as shocked.
“I called my aunts and told them I had found ‘LoLo’, Mectahylde’s nickname,” she said.
Since finding each other, Jeannot wants to reconnect with her lost family. She has met Jewell’s family here in Miami and an extended family of four who lives in the U.S.
As longtime employees of The Palace, they’ve become much closer and both agree laughingly that thank goodness they were always nice to each other and never had any issues working together.
For more informarion about The Palace, visit www.ThePalace.org.