Friday, January 21

Unusual. She got the wrong number and ran into him: 20 years later, they are still friends

Gladys Hankerson and Mike Moffitt live more than 2,250 kilometers from each other: her in Florida, he in Rhode Island, United States. They had never seen each other before last week, yet they have been friends for 20 years. An unlikely friendship that started with a mistake when Gladys dialed her sister’s phone number …

401 instead of 410

One day in the early 2000s, Gladys thought about calling her sister who lives in Maryland. Instead of dialing 410, her regional dialer, she dials 401, that of the state of Rhode Island. It is Mike who answers, the call lasts only a few seconds when Gladys realizes her mistake and apologizes.

Except that this error, the American will repeat it over and over again. “There were times when she accidentally dialed the wrong number, but she ended up calling just to say hello,” Mike recalls to the American TV station. CNN. So much so that one day he decides to make a conversation with her, interrupting her before she apologizes and hangs up in the process.

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Mutual support

The phone calls between the two strangers then become regular. During their discussions, they support each other at a complicated time in their lives: Gladys was divorced and had just lost her son while Mike had lost his grandparents. “During that time, I was devastated, and Mike cheered me up,” says Gladys. His interlocutor compares their conversations to “breaths of fresh air”.

Twenty years later, Gladys and Mike continue to call each other every two months or so.

Finally the meeting

After all this time spent talking at a distance, the two friends were finally able to meet during the Thanksgiving holidays at the end of November. Mike was on a family vacation in Florida just two miles from Gladys’ house in Delray Beach when he decided to take a short detour to see her. “I walked in and said: Gladys, it’s Mike from Rhode Island! and she replied:Oh, my friend Mike! I am blessed, and she threw her arms up in the air, “he says.

After so many hours of handset chatting, Gladys said she considers Mike like family.

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