A woman who left her home country of Colombia when she was a child surprised her father after 21 years apart.
36-year-old Valentina Aragundy came to America when she was just 14 years old on a visa to get a better education.
At the time, Columbia was seeing increasing kidnappings and death threats to its citizens, so sending his daughter to America was extremely difficult for her father, but he knew it was the right thing to do for her own safety.
But their time apart would be much longer than either of them ever expected.
Before they knew it, it had been 21 years before they had seen each other. Over the years they FaceTimed, but of course it wasn’t the same as seeing each other in person.
During her time in America, her father sadly missed out on many milestones such as her graduating school and getting married.
Aragundy, who currently lives in Miami, Florida, wanted to visit her in Columbia, but immigration issues kept preventing her from doing so. When she finally became a U.S. resident, the COVID-19 pandemic hit and she was unable to go anywhere.
When Aragundy was finally able to travel, she knew she wanted to plan a special surprise for her dad. She told him that he had to pick up her aunt at the airport, but little did he know, it would be his daughter who he’d be picking up.
Her dad, Joffre, was now picking up his beloved daughter at the same airport in Bogota that he dropped her off as a teenager all those years ago.
When he first saw her, he burst into tears and gave her the biggest hug. The two were finally reunited after 21 long years.
Aragundy was also able to meet her siblings for the first time, which was also a very special moment.
“It’s not that people want to wait that long, it’s that sometimes they can’t help it,” Aragundy told USA TODAY. “I don’t want people to think that my dad was a bad dad because he sent me here, or that I was a bad daughter because I didn’t go back. It’s just that our circumstances prevented it for a really long time. So now we make the best of the time that we do have.”
Watch their heartwarming reunion in the video below:Whizzco