Amanda was just three months old when disaster struck. When her mother walked away to retrieve a diaper, the toddler rolled off the sofa and onto the steam heater. The infant was severely burned very immediately. She was admitted to Albany Medical Center’s burn unit.
This graphic first appeared in the Albany Medical Center’s annual report in 1977, and it soon gained popularity. A young nurse, Susan Berger, is shown embracing Amanda immediately after the surgery.
Susan describes her initial visit to the burn center. And the infant was nearly her first case. The girl was also shocked that the infant did not scream or even go asleep after the therapy.
The nurse then began conversing with her while holding her in her arms, and they were photographed together. Because it wasn’t a planned image, no one cared how they appeared in the shot because they were fighting for Amanda’s life at the time.
It’s been 38 years already. Amanda Scarpinatti stated that she looked at this photo whenever she was feeling bad. She made the decision to look for her childhood guardian angel.
“I had to fix the consequences of burns for many years after it happened. I’ve heard a variety of opinions regarding myself: youngsters insulted and avoided playing with me, my friends’ parents refused to invite me to their homes, and I was too terrifying for many. That was really humiliating. Aside from my parents’ dedication, this portrait of love has always been there for me. A strange woman cradles me in her arms with the kind of love that only a parent can conjure in the presence of their child. When things were difficult for me, which was often, I would look at our photo and find the strength to smile again.”
Amanda had been looking for Susan for years, and when she cried out on social media, fate shined on her. Susan Berger was found on the same day that her book was republished by hundreds of people.
Two weeks later, the women finally met. Because it was so real and wonderful, everyone in the room was brought to tears.
And two soulmates stood together as if they’d never been separated.