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After 39 years of searching, mother and daughter reunited in Seychelles

After 39 years of searching, mother and daughter reunited in Seychelles

Corine discovered her Seychelles for the first time after being re-united with her mother.

A Seychelloise, Corine, was separated from her mother, Veroniqua Esparon, in Libanon at birth. After that, Veroniqua had two other children – Stan Esparon and Michelle Esparon – but they never stopped thinking about Corine. Last week it was tears of joy as mother and daughter were reunited in Seychelles after 39 years of searching.

Corine discovered her Seychelles for the first time after being re-united with her mother. The Ministry of Tourism and Culture and its Seychelles Tourism Board have met Veroniqua Esparon and her long-lost daughter, Corine Guillon, at their ESPACE Building Offices to help facilitate the family discover the islands of Praslin and La Digue as they spend quality time together. It was Madame Esparon who had called on Minister Alain St.Ange, the Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, to consider assisting with logistics for her and her long-lost daughter to get to Praslin and La Digue as a family.

Madame Esparon has always been saying that her wish to hold her lost daughter and that she has been growing stronger with each passing day. Veroniqua Esparon lost her daughter Corine Guillon in Liban at birth.

Despite nearly 39 years without Corine, the family had continued to search for their missing daughter.

As was widely reported in the Seychelles media last week the family was finally reunited when Corine arrived on an Air Seychelles flight from Paris, with her husband and two sons.

After years with no leads and no new information, the youngest brother, Stan, along with her sister, Michelle, went on a mission to search for their missing sister, and with the help of the country’s national airline, Air Seychelles, their dream has finally become a reality.

At the Seychelles International Airport VIP Lounge yesterday, emotions flowed as mother held her lost daughter after 39 years of separation.

Veroniqua could not contain her emotions as she tried to express what it felt like to be reunited with her daughter.

“I am very joyful; I am more alive than ever. I asked God to give me the strength to be able to be present on this exceptional day to welcome back my daughter. I also want to thank my brothers and sisters from church who came today with lovely songs. After all these years, since her birth, it’s now that I can finally hold her in my arms again. I really had to prepare myself for this moment, I had to be strong,” an emotional Veroniqua said.

Corine was also visibly moved to see her mother for the first time.

“It was a dream for me to be reunited with my mother. I have tried so many times to gather information about her, but most of the time I was unsuccessful. But I always kept a positive mind, prayed a lot. It is a miracle that we are reunited. I want to thank everyone who took part in the hunt to reunite us, as well as Air Seychelles,” she said.

Josie Michaud-Payet, manager for Corporate Social Responsibility at Air Seychelles, stated that Air Seychelles knew about the story of Veroniqua’s lost daughter through a program that was broadcast on SBC recently.

“As the national airline, our mission to the community is to try and make some dreams become a reality by giving back to the community. So this was an occasion to try and make this long-awaiting dream become a reality by reuniting a mother and daughter,” she said.

This week, Madame Esparon and her daughter Corine will be spending time on Praslin and La Digue together with their families. This was confirmed to them when the family met Minister St.Ange; Tourism Board CEO Sherin Francis; and Anne Lafortune, the PS for Tourism, at their ESPACE Offices in Victoria. “We felt it was important to facilitate this adventure for Corine and her mother Veronique. They will have the opportunity to have quality time together, and at the same time Corine, her husband, and her two children will get the opportunity to discover Seychelles,” said Minister St.Ange.

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