A World War II veteran met a mystery woman in 1944 but after a brief interaction, they separated and did not see each other again.
Finally, after 78 years, they reunited and recounted the unforgettable moment they shared during World War II.
99-year-old Reginald Pye recalled the time she met a French mystery woman. Just two weeks after the Normandy invasion in France, 21-year-old Pye saw a 14-year-old girl watching him as he was about to have his dinner, which was canned sardines and bread coated in jam.
The girl looked so hungry so he approached her and offered his tin of sardines. The girl, however, shook her head and kept staring at Pye’s jam sandwich.
Pye realized that the girl actually wanted the jam sandwich so he gave it to her and she ran away after taking the treat.
When he woke up the next day, he found out that his mess tin was filled with milk and the mysterious girl also left a photo of herself with a note on the back.
“The memory of my very brief encounter with this young girl will stay with me forever,” said Pye.
“In the bleakest of times, this bit of human interaction made a huge mark on my life.” He kept her photo in his wallet for 78 years, hoping their paths will cross again.
In the 1970s, Pye went back to the region where they met, calling the church and the local vicarage for any information about the mysterious woman.
Sadly, his search was unsuccessful and all the hopes he had of seeing her again instantly vanished.
In June 2022, the progress Pye had been waiting for for years finally came after he shared his story with a taxi driver who took him to D-Day commemorations in Normandy.
Pye told him it was his last request to reunite with the mysterious woman he met 78 years ago.
The driver shared it with the press and when the woman’s daughter saw the photo, she worked with Taxi Charity to organize the reunion.
After nearly 80 years, Pye finally laid his eyes again on the mystery woman he has been wondering about for so many years. They met in the woman’s retirement home in Northern, France.
Huguette Geoffroy, now 92 years old, recognized Pye after he gave her a jam sandwich as he did in 1944. He also showed her the picture he had been keeping in his wallet. With the help of an interpreter, the two talked to each other and recalled their first meeting.
“Merci! Nice to see you again after such a long time,” exclaimed Geoffroy. “We got older, but we’re still the same,” she added. Pye offered her a tin of sardines, which she rejected again, as she did 78 years ago.
Pye was very happy that she met Geoffroy again and remembered their brief encounter which lived on his mind for decades. Geoffroy said she was “extremely touched” that Pye tried to find him and reconnect with her.
She even jokingly said that she would leave her boyfriend at the care home to marry Pye. They went on to celebrate their heart-warming reunion with their extended families.
The charity volunteer, Paul Cook, was also elated after witnessing the reunion of Pye and Geoffroy. “There are no words to describe how elated I am that Reg has found Huguette, this is like a Hollywood blockbuster and I wouldn’t be surprised if this beautiful story was made into a film,” he said.
Pye was very grateful to all the people who helped arrange this reunion. “I cannot believe that she has finally been found and I wish to thank everyone, including our friend Emma, our cab driver Paul and the Taxi Charity’s French adviser Nathalie Varniere, who have helped to make my dream come true.”
Watch Pye and Geoofroy’s heartfelt reunion in this video
2 thoughts on “WWII veteran reunites with French mystery woman he met in 1944 – ‘I carried her photo in my wallet for 78 years’”
What a beautiful story!