How a letter led to a happy ending
By SALLY GORDON
MURWILLUMBAH'S Hayley Wright had just got out of bed when her mobile phone rang.
It was only 7am.
She answered the call.
It was the first of many calls the 19-year-old answered throughout the day on March 13.
That same day The Daily Examiner had published a letter Hayley had written to the editor, which asked if residents of the Clarence Valley could help her get in contact with her biological father, Tony Cameron.
Hayley had never met her dad, but she desperately wanted to.
The retail support manager had been searching intensely for her father, who she knew had previously lived in Maclean, for the past six months.
And now thanks to the scores of phone calls from Daily Examiner readers, she has the chance to fulfil one of her greatest wishes when she reunites with her father this weekend.
The teenager said the response from the Clarence Valley community was 'awesome'.
"It was just phone call after phone call all day; the last call I had was two days ago so I'm still getting calls," she said.
"I had an enormous response from the community down there in response to my letter, thank you."
The teenager, who has been raised by her grandparents, said the breakthrough call came from a woman in Lennox Heads at 8am.
Hayley said the woman who she later discovered was her aunty (Mr Cameron's sister) had been contacted by a someone in Grafton.
The aunty passed on her brother's phone number to Hayley and the nervous teenager rang her father the same day.
She said when she told her dad who she was, there was silence.
"We had a bit of a chat, there wasn't much said because we were both in so much shock, but after almost 20 years it was amazing," she said.
Hayley is now in the process of setting up a meeting with her father this Saturday in Lennox Heads.
"We will be reunited after almost 20 years ... I can't wait. This is one of the days I have been waiting for," she said.