TWO brothers have launched a desperate bid to be reunited with their long-lost mother – 15 years after they left their native Thailand.
Connor and Callum Speedie moved to Edinburgh with father Raymond in 1999 hoping for a better life and were forced to leave their mother, Warinon Pranglin, behind in their home town of Kanchanaburi, Western Thailand.
As Warinon had to care for her sick, elderly mother, and another son from an earlier marriage, she made the heartbreaking decision to let her sons go without her.
The family lost contact with Warinon after moving house in Edinburgh several times despite a string of attempts to send their new address to Thailand.
But a fortnight ago – after 15 years of silence – Warinon finally managed to track down her sons through a friend with access to the internet at work. She was able to contact Connor, 20, and his girlfriend, Megan Gordon, on Facebook.
“When she got in touch I thought it was one of my friends messing about,” said Connor, whose Thai name is Sulakan.
“But the woman sent a picture of a note with our old address on it which was in my handwriting when I was young. Then she started sending me pictures of my mother.
“I was just shocked at first. It was quite a strange feeling.”
Connor, who is applying to do a college course in health and social care, said: “I don’t really remember her properly as I was only five years old when we left. I think I do but it is probably from pictures. My brother doesn’t remember anything at all.
“I’ve never been back to Thailand, it’s so expensive. Plus we had no idea where she lived.”
Now the boys have launched a Kickstarter funding campaign to raise £4000 for a trip to Thailand in July 2016, and they are making a documentary about their long-awaited reunion.
Connor, who lives in Abbeyhill with his dad and 19-year-old brother, said: “It would mean so much to me. I’ve always wanted to know where mum was and what she would be like.
“We decided to do the documentary as we thought it would be great to record the reaction and to make a nice thing to share with everyone.”
Girlfriend Megan, a second-year drama and performance student at Queen Margaret University, has started working on the documentary.
“It was like something out of a movie as it was just so out of the blue, said Megan, 19.
“I woke up one morning and this woman had added me from Thailand. She asked me for Connor’s address and said she was his mum’s friend.
“I just had this feeling as they were both from the same place and I just thought ‘what are the odds?’”
Megan, of Ormiston, added: “We thought everyone could share in the experience because it is an amazing thing.”
The trio need to raise the cash to pay for flights, accommodations and equipment costs for the documentary project.
To find out more visit www.kickstarter.com/projects/286267261/reuniting-a-family-in-thailand.