Saffron Walden man shows long-lost sister the sights of home

PUBLISHED: 10:35 04 June 2017

Danny Long with his travel scrapbook. Picture: ABBIE WEAVING

Danny Long with his travel scrapbook. Picture: ABBIE WEAVING

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A 72-year-old Saffron Walden man who discovered he had a sister living in America is making up for lost time by showing her the sights across the pond.

Danny's father, Daniel Palma. Picture: Danny LongDanny's father, Daniel Palma. Picture: Danny Long

Danny Long was born during the Second World War in 1944 to an English mother and American father – Daniel Palma, who was stationed at Debden with the American Air Force.

Although he always knew his father was American, it was not until he visited a psychic at an event in Great Easton in 2012 that he decided to delve deeper.

“The psychic said there was a Danny coming through. She said he’s an American and your biological father and he’s been passed for quite some time. He said he was sorry he wasn’t there to raise me, but she said the word ‘sibling’, so I went to America.”

After researching his father, Danny discovered he was buried in St Petersburg, in Florida, before finding his sister, Patti, who was mentioned in his obituary.

Danny and Patti in Germany. Picture: Danny LongDanny and Patti in Germany. Picture: Danny Long

Since then Danny has spent time with Patti’s family, met his niece and nephew, and travelled to the likes of Paris and Rome with his sister - even discovering a distant relation between his family and the mayor of Italian town, Sonnino.

This year though, Patti paid a visit to the UK and the pair have travelled to the likes of Stansted Mountfitchet, London, as well as spending plenty of time in Saffron Walden’s pub, The Temeraire.

“She loved it, especially with the market town in Saffron Walden going back 800 years. In America they wouldn’t have markets stretching back that long,” he said.

Danny is keeping a scrapbook of their travels together, including their visit to Bad Wildungen in Germany in March, Portsmouth in April, and London’s famous ice bar.

“I used to go to Bad Wildungen a lot when Saffron Walden was twinned with it. It’s a lovely town to go and see and thought I must take Patti there to see it,” he said.

“I wanted to show her some European countries, and in Germany this was the first place that came to mind because it’s a typical German town and a spa town too. She’d never been there before and she liked it.”

Patti has now returned to America, but hopes to pay another visit soon.

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