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2 orphaned sisters from South Korea meet in Florida hospital after being separated for 40 years

By Mason White 6:01 PM October 12, 2015
Holly Hoyle O’Brien and Meagan Hughes 

By: Wayne Morin
Two sisters who were separated as young girls, were reunited in a Florida hospital after 40 years.

The young girls were placed in an orphanage in South Korea, and were separated after one of them was adopted by a couple in the United states.

Holly Hoyle O’Brien, originally named Pok-nam Shin, was adopted by a U.S. couple in 1978 when she was 9 years old.

A few years before the adoption, her biological father was killed by a speeding train. Her stepmother took her younger half-sister and left. She was placed in an orphanage in South Korea.

O’Brien, 46, grew up in a happy home in Alexandria, Virginia, with three sisters and six brothers.

Her half-sister Meagan Hughes, was also placed in an orphanage. She barely remembers her mother or the orphanage she was placed in.

Hughes, who had been named Eun-Sook Shin, was also adopted by a U.S. family and was raised in Kingston, New York, about 300 miles from where her sister lived.

Earlier this year, O’Brien was hired at the Bayfront Health Port Charlotte hospital. She is working on the fourth floor with the medical surgical unit. Three months later, Hughes, who had been working as a physical therapy assistant, was also hired at the hospital.

Both instantly connected and soon began comparing similarities in their lives while living in South Korea. DNA tests confirmed their suspicions that they were indeed half-sisters.