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Long lost Dr. Seuss book hits stores today — and it’s already a bestseller

UnknownDr. Seuss returns to bookstores today with his first “new” title in 25 years, making it a banner day for Lorax lovers, Horton huggers and Cat in the Hatters everywhere.

What Pet Should I Get?,” discovered in 2013, becomes the second long-lost book from a famous author to be released this summer, following Harper Lee’s “Go Set a Watchman.” Random House is clearly expecting the book to fly off the shelves; the publisher ordered a print run of 1 million copies.

The manuscript by Seuss (whose real name was Theodor Geisel) was likely written in the 1950s or 1960s, according to the New York Times, and stashed away in his office. His widow, Audrey Geisel, found the manuscript while having some of the late author’s papers appraised; much of the rest of his archive resides at UC San Diego.

“He often worked on something and tucked it away to return to later,” Audrey Geisel told the New York Times through a spokesperson. “I imagine he was doing just that, and then discovered new stories to tell that took his attention away from it.”

In the new book, a brother and sister (who previously made an appearance in Seuss’ “One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish”) visit a pet shop to select a new animal companion. Seuss’ website says, “The tale captures a classic childhood moment — choosing a pet — and uses it to illuminate a life lesson: that it is hard to make up your mind, but sometimes you just have to do it!”

Early reaction to the book seems to be somewhat mixed. The Wall Street Journal gave the book a lukewarm review, writing that “the rhymes feel thin and lack the texture and manic density of Geisel’s more seasoned writing.” The New Yorker was a little more positive, promising that the new book “won’t retroactively ruin your childhood. It’s an amiable stroll through Seussdom that might have seemed extraordinary if Dr. Seuss hadn’t published anything else.”

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Long-Lost Son Meets Homeless Piano Prodigy Dad: ‘I Just Want to Help Him Clean His Act Up’

070615_homeless_sideDonald Gould is the homeless man who stunned America with his amazing piano playing.

Even after INSIDE EDITION gave the piano man an astonishing makeover, he told us there was still one thing missing from his life — the young son he lost touch with 15 years ago when his life first spiraled out of control.

“Now, maybe my son will get in touch with me,” he told us.

INSIDE EDITION tracked down Donald’s long-lost son. His name is Donny and is an 18-year-old who’s just graduated high school.

Young Donny was adopted when he was five years old by Terri and Darryl, we’re withholding their last name at their request.

Terri said: “It was love at first sight. As soon as we saw him we loved him we knew this was his home.”

Donny grew up in a loving home in Michigan. He knew he was adopted but had no idea his biological father would ever get in touch.

“It never even crossed my mind,” Donny said.

Then last week, mom and dad got a phone call from a friend who saw Donny’s biological dad on INSIDE EDITION.

At that point, the piano man still looked very shaggy.

Darryl said: “We watched the video and after we watched the video we called Donny into the room and sat him between us and had him watch the video for the first time.”

Mom and dad explained to Donny that the homeless man with the amazing piano talent was his birth father.

“When we saw him, the way he looked, it was just so sad that we wanted to reach out to him,” Terri said.

And when Donny and his mom and dad saw our other story about Donald’s transformation — their minds were made up.

Darryl said: “We seen that he cleaned his act up, and he was going into rehab, so we thought okay we’ll make contact.”

Donny says he loves his adopted mom and dad as much as any son could love his parents.

But he thought getting in touch with Donald might help the piano man as he gets his life back on track.

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How a Friend (and Facebook!) Helped Reunite Twin Sisters Separated at Birth: ‘We Were Just Gobsmacked’

separated-twins-1-435Anais Bordier may never have found her long lost twin sister, Samantha Futerman, if it weren’t for her good friend, Kelsang Dongsar, and his love of YouTube videos.

In December 2012, Dongsar, 30, happened to be watching a YouTube video called High School Virgin when he saw a young woman who looked just like his good friend, Bordier, 27, a fellow fashion design student in London.

“I kept clicking onto the next link and then, for some strange reason, I started watching this video,” he tells PEOPLE. “There was this girl that looked very familiar. I thought, ‘That looks a bit like Anais.’

“But then I was like, ‘It’s not possible because this girl is American and Anais is French.’ So I sort of let it be.”

A couple minutes later, he was more than shocked when he saw the woman in the video turn around and smile. “I thought, ‘That is the same smile Anais has as well!’ That just blew my mind. It was actually like seeing Anais in the video.”

He immediately took a screen shot of the young woman in the video and posted it on Bordier’s Facebook page, joking, “When were you going to tell me that you were an actress?”

The shocking post caused an uproar among their mutual friends. “Everyone was like, ‘Tell us where you got the video. This is bizarre.’ Anais was in shock as well,” he says.

When Bordier saw the screen shot, she says, “It was crazy. I had never seen someone who looked so similar. Sometimes you meet people and you say, ‘Okay, we have the same eyes or the same nose, but everything else is different.’ Here, everything was similar.”

Bordier and Dongsar tried to find the woman’s name but couldn’t since the YouTube video had no credits.

Fate stepped in again weeks later when Dongsar happened upon yet another video featuring the young woman – this time in a promo for the 2013 movie, 21 and Over. Unlike the YouTube video, the movie credits revealed the young woman’s name: Samantha Futerman.

“I couldn’t believe I found her again,” says Dongsar, who has his own company, Kelsang Dongsar – a London-based creative and luxury fashion brand consultancy with clients including Kewa and Paul’s Boutique.

“I was like, ‘This is definitely strange. Something real is going to happen here.’ ”

Armed finally with a name, Bordier went to IMDb and was stunned when she saw that Futerman, a Los Angeles-based actress who had appeared in the 2005 movie, Memoirs of a Geisha, was born in South Korea, like her – and was born on the same day, November 19, 1987. Like Bordier, she had also been adopted – Bordier to a couple in Paris and Futerman to a New Jersey family with three boys.

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Long-Lost Brother’s Death Leads Man on $1M Scavenger Hunt

shutterstock_541376321NEW YORK CITY — When Louis Passerini died in 1994 at Bellevue Hospital, his passing barely registered with the rest of the world.

No one was there to mourn the eccentric 84-year-old. He hadn’t been in touch with any of his family for 27 years.

None of his relatives, including a nephew on the Upper West Side, knew that he was living alone in a boarding home in Manhattan. None were even told Passerini had died. He didn’t leave behind contact numbers or addresses to reach loved ones — let alone any information about his life or belongings.

All that remained from his 84 years on Earth were more than 30 bank accounts and safety deposit boxes containing cryptic messages scattered around the country. Collectively, they held nearly $1 million.

But since no one knew he had died and no paperwork existed to alert anyone to the accounts, the fruits of Passerini’s frugal living and constant saving remained a secret and stayed that way for another six years.

“He was very private,” his brother Joseph Passerini said. “He never had a telephone or a car, so you couldn’t track him that way.”

That’s why Joseph said he was shocked to hear news about his brother in 2000, when Jaisan Inc., a Manhattan-based agency that searches for unclaimed bank accounts, contacted him and another brother, Henry Passerini.

Jaisan informed them that Louis had died and that it had discovered two of Louis’s bank accounts in New York that held $81,155 but had been dormant for years.

Henry who, unlike Joseph, was near in age to Louis and at one time had a close relationship with him, suspected that the $81,155 was just the tip of the iceberg.

Henry knew Louis had been a miser his whole life — even during the Great Depression. The brother also knew Louis had a long career in the Air Force, meaning he moved around the country and could have held banks accounts anywhere.

With that gnawing hunch, Henry embarked on what could be one of the longest and farthest-reaching scavenger hunts — all to find more of Louis’ hidden money.

The search started in 2001 with Henry identifying hundreds of banks and other financial institutions in the immediate neighborhoods in which his brother had lived during his life. Henry hired lawyers who sent letters to each of these institutions, asking if they held accounts in Louis’ name.

More than 60 letters went to New York City banks alone. Another set of letters was sent to the 18 largest banks in Canada because the family had lived there at one time.

Henry reached out to government agencies and people who might have information on where his brother’s money was. And he contacted the unclaimed funds’ administrator in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

He also reviewed Internal Revenue Service records to see if any banks reported interest on accounts held by Louis from 1996 to 2001.

Joseph said what Henry uncovered left him and his family “very surprised.”

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At Danish Special Olympics host town, a reunion between long lost cousins

55b1a676700dd.imageJust hours before a team of Special Olympics athletes from Denmark arrived in Solvang, Esther Jacobsen Bates received a surprise she never expected.

While scrolling through emails before lunch on Wednesday, she came across one from a relative in Denmark.

In what Bates describes as “an interesting aside,” the email revealed that she has a cousin she never met — and that she would be in Solvang that day before competing in the Special Olympics World Games.

“I’m going to meet a cousin I never knew I had,” Bates said Wednesday afternoon. “I had no idea she would be here.”

Bates runs the Elverhoj Museum, celebrating the Danish culture and history of Solvang. She didn’t know that day that she would be learning more about her own Danish roots.

“I heard it unfold on the phone,” said Nina Hager, who works with Bates at the museum. “She scrolled through the athlete list after and found the name.”

Bates’ cousin, Elsebeth Vestergaard Pedersen, is a Special Olympic handball athlete who celebrated her 50th birthday Thursday.

“People forget there are very real ties between Denmark and Solvang — it’s not just the way it looks here,” Bates said, pointing at the town’s iconic old-world architecture.

During a welcoming ceremony for the athletes Wednesday, Bates paced throughout town searching for her long-lost relative among crowds of Danish athletes, unsure of what she looked like. Then she was pointed out at a park table.

During a barbeque at Solvang Park, Pedersen was munching on a hamburger, unaware she had any connection to anything in Solvang where the Danish Special Olympics team was being hosted.

“That little girl is my wife’s cousin’s daughter from Denmark,” said Bates’ father, Knud Jacobsen, pointing at Pedersen.

Bates wrapped her arm around Pedersen’s shoulder.

“I’m your cousin,” she told her in Danish.

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Seattle woman uses Facebook to find long lost dad; she may have found him in Vancouver

 

screen-shot-2015-07-09-at-11-15-22-amVancouver, WA (KPTV) — A Seattle woman trying to find her long lost dad on Facebook shared a special photo that’s been re-shared so many times, it may have finally reached the man she was looking for.

Turns out, he may only live a couple hours South, in Vancouver.

The two tell FOX 12 they’re trying not to get their hopes up until a DNA test comes back, but their stories all seem to match up. Now, some 37 years later Tina Gomez and Ric Castellanos are finally learning all about each other.

On a whim, Tina Gomez posted a photo to Facebook, hoping it would somehow lead her to her long lost father. She knew his name, but says she she had no idea who he was. That photo was shared tens of thousands of times since that day, until it wound up on Ric Castellanos’ computer screen.

“I said, I’m going to call her up, I took a picture of myself and sent it to her,” said Castellanos.

Gomez says she was stunned to hear his voice on the other end of the line.

“He said, ‘you know I remember your mom, she was very beautiful, and I’m just amazed, I’m excited,’ and he said, ‘I don’t know what to say,’” said Gomez.

Castellanos says he dated Gomez’s mother in California for a couple months and then moved to Vancouver, not knowing she was pregnant.

“I wish I would have known,” said Castellanos.

Gomez, who now has a family of her own, says she always felt a little piece of her was missing. Turns out Castellanos has felt the same way too, without really ever knowing why.

“I’ve been looking for something like this for a long time,” said Castellanos. “I’m pleased, I’m very happy. I just wish I would have known, my life would have been so much different.”

The two are now sharing stories about themselves over the phone. Castellanos says he can already spot out some similarities in their lives.

“I can see it in her mouth, by the way she talks, the things she’s done in the past and I say, ‘oh I’m sorry, I’ve done that too,” laughed Castellanos.

It could be a reunion decades in the making, and all thanks to Facebook.

“I thanked everybody today on Facebook, and I thank Tina for looking for me and wanting me all these years later,” said Castellanos.

Gomez says she sent Castellanos a DNA test this week, Castellanos tells FOX 12 he’s about to send it off.

They expect it will take about six to eight weeks to get the results back, and if it is truly a match, the two say they plan to meet up soon after.

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‘Fly’ Lawrence finds long lost sister Dianne

EDE_03-08-2015_EGN_05_GRA310715FlyLawrence_t620Robert “Fly” Lawrence will tell you he has done a lot of things in his life, but none much more emotional or special than meeting his long lost half-sister Dianne Buckley after searching for more than five years.

“She is only a short bugger, about five-foot-seven, and has changed a lot since the last time I saw her, but that is my sister Dianne,” Fly said.

“We just knew it as soon as we saw each other. There was this connection.”

Fly had been searching for Dianne, utilising social media and his wealth of connections in the local community and surrounds to track her down.

Last weekend, his endless hours of searching came to fruition when he and Dianne met at a small cafe in Loganholme, Queensland.

“We were there for a couple of hours just talking about life, what we are doing, what we have done,” Fly said.

“It was a really emotional weekend. I don’t know who cried more, me or her.”

Fly’s brother Gary, who lives in Coomera in Queensland, also made the drive up to Loganholme, to the surprise of Dianne and Fly.

“I was not sure if Gary was going to come,” Fly said. “I had let him know about it but he said he had a lot on that day.

“We were at the cafe and my phone started ringing but I could not see who it was. I passed it over to Dianne and she started crying, saying it was Gary.

“Next thing you know he sat down right next to her and surprised her. She had no idea he was going to be there.”

Dianne, who had moved from Grafton before her birth, told Fly that she had always felt a connection to the town.

“She said on several times she had passed through Grafton and something inside her told her to stop and visit the town,” he said. “She had actually driven past dad’s old place on Wharf Street a couple of times.”

Now that they have met, Fly plans to keep in touch with his sister as much as possible.

“We will definitely meet up again and more often,” he said.

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