Teacher, Student Find Out They're Sisters

Both adopted, they lived only 20 miles apart for years
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2016 7:08 AM CST

Diane DiProspero Cook always considered Karen Cometa-Zempel to be her favorite teacher from New York's Bryant and Stratton College, where she was a student in 1985. Thirty years later, it makes a lot of sense why. Adopted as an infant, DiProspero Cook recently became interested in her biological family and reached out to the state Adoption Registry, reports WHAM. She received a letter back this month. Inside was information on her sister, born seven years earlier and also adopted as a baby. It also contained a name: Karen Cometa-Zempel. It turned out Cometa-Zempel had also contacted the registry in the hope of finding out more about her biological relatives. When DiProspero Cook looked up the name on Facebook, "I couldn't believe it. I immediately knew who she was."

The sisters, who share a mother, soon discovered they had a remarkably similar upbringing. Both joined close-knit Italian families living 20 miles apart in upstate New York and attended Catholic school, reports ABC News. "We lived parallel lives," says DiProspero Cook. But they have more in common than that. "We think alike, we have the same mannerisms," she adds. They're both left-handed, have bubbly personalities, and love shopping. In fact, shopping brought the pair unexpectedly together for their first meeting. Though they planned to meet at a later date, they bumped into each other on Valentine's Day weekend at an outlet mall near Niagara Falls. (These long-lost siblings also knew each other.)

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