Last month Zella Jackson Price met her daughter Melanie Diane Gilmore for the first time after 49 years. After giving birth to a premature Melanie, Zella was told at the Homer G. Phillips Hospital that her baby didn’t make it. But after her and several other women with the same unfortunate story sought help from a lawyer, she gained a daughter and a granddaughter.
The women, all of whom are African-American, say they were told their babies had died at Homer G. Phillips Hospital, a city-owned facility that closed in 1979. They have reached out to attorney Albert Watkins, who represents Zella Jackson Price, 76, and filed a petition Monday in St Louis Circuit Court, seeking adoption records at the hospital. Watkins said the women all tell a similar, sad story.
Luckily for Price, this story had a happy ending. Hopefully the other women, all having given birth between 1950 and 1970, have the same luck in the pursuit of their stolen children. Price is looking forward to her new relationship with her daughter and granddaughter.
“I’ve got to get to work spoiling those children.” – Price