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Woman speaks to kidnapped granddaughter after ten years

By Megan Brantley, mbrantley@wcyb.com
Published On: May 08 2013 04:32:58 PM CDT
Updated On: May 06 2013 11:00:00 PM CDT

It was a phone call like no other; the voice at the other end was what Fern Gentry had been waiting nearly 10 years to hear.

ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. -

It was a phone call like no other; the voice at the other end was what Fern Gentry had been waiting nearly 10 years to hear.

“[I] just cried and was happy. I told her I loved her and missed her and had prayed for her, oh my God. It was just so great,” said Gentry.

Gentry is the grandmother of Amanda Berry, who went missing nearly 10 years ago after being abducted from where she lived in Cleveland, Ohio. "We get a call that she was missing. She was on her way home," said Gentry.

Gentry tells News 5 all she had was her faith to rely on as she and her family hoped for closure. "We had gotten so many hopes. We got so many times that they said they had found her and they hadn't found her. And every time you got your hopes up and then it fell again," said Gentry.

It's been a stressful time for the family, filling them with worry and dread. "[We thought] she was probably dead, that she'd been killed," said Gentry.

But there was never any closure in the case -- until the phone rang Monday night. Amanda had been found. "I had kind of accepted that she was gone, but then when I heard she was alive it was hard to think that she was. I could hardly believe it at first," said Gentry.

She says it didn't take long to realize it wasn't a dream. "It was like a big weight had been lifted off of me. It's like here she is, even though I can't hold her, there her voice is," said Gentry.

Finally, she heard her granddaughter's voice. "[It was a] great Mother's Day! Can't ask for any better," Gentry said.

It wasn't the ending she'd expected, but it was the one she'd prayed for.    

Gentry tells us Amanda plans to visit them in Elizabethton very soon.

We've learned Amanda had a baby while in captivity; her daughter is six years old.