A woman discovers that her best friend from childhood is actually her sister.

Irene Love, she has short hair and a grey animal print sweater

Irene Love

A hand takes an old letter from a box.

Irene found her birth certificate


Two childhood photos of the same girl. She is wearing her hair in tight curls and a white dress.

Last known photos of Dolores Ford

In 1962, 16 year-old Irene Love of Los Angeles, California, was home alone one Saturday afternoon exploring a box she found in her mother’s bedroom:

“I opened it up and there were some papers. They were dated 1942. And I thought, God, Mom keeps this? Then there was another piece of paper folded up and it was a birth certificate. And it had Irene Wynn on it. And I go, hmm, same first name as mine. I said, well the date, that was what caught my eye, the date was the same date as my birth. And by that time, a little bit later on, my mother came home. And I showed her the paper. And it came to light that I was adopted and my mom and my dad had adopted me three days after I was born. And she was fearful that I was going to leave and go and search for my real parents. And I told her no, I wasn’t, I just wanted to know what the story was.”

Minnie and Forrest Love had no children of their own, so they were thrilled with their newly adopted daughter. Irene’s parents gave her everything, even a best friend. Dolores Ford was one year older than Irene, and the only child of her parents’ best friends. Irene said they became inseparable:

“We went on camping trips. We went to the park. We went everywhere, to the lakes. We never really argued. It was like we knew each other, we connected. If one wanted something, the other one knew about it and it was always there. We were just connected so close that, there was like a great friendship there. Every holiday they would come over and bring the gifts and we exchanged gifts there in the living room. We basically got the same toys. They made sure that we were happy kids.”

Irene’s mother asked her to think back to her childhood. She asked her to recall Clifton’s, the restaurant they had gone to every Sunday. Now Irene’s mother explained why they had always gone to the same place. Irene’s birth mother, Ramona, worked at the cafeteria. This was her only opportunity to watch Irene grow up.

At some point, Irene’s birth father, Glenn, began to work at Clifton’s too. The Loves would sit at different tables in the restaurant each week so both Glenn and Ramona could see the daughter that they had been too poverty-stricken to raise themselves. Irene says she understood their predicament:

“I never faulted them for what they did. They had to do what they had to do. And I’m thankful that they gave me a family, to the family that they did give me to. So I was lucky in that way.”

When Irene was 10 years old, her friend’s mother died. Suddenly, Dolores seemed to vanish into thin air. Irene never saw her again. Years later, Irene’s mother finally explained what had happened to her friend. Dolores’ father took her to live with Glenn and Ramona, the couple who worked at Clifton’s cafeteria. But why? Finally, the shocking news came out: Dolores was also Glenn and Ramona’s child. Delores and Irene were sisters. Irene was stunned and felt an even stronger urge to reunite with Dolores.

After both of her adoptive parents died, Irene found herself drawn back to the old neighborhood, reliving her happy childhood with Dolores:

“In my mind, I can see us playing together. We were like twins, you know, but didn’t know we were sisters. And so that’s what I want real bad, to meet with her. She’s a part of my early life. She’s a part of me. I feel things that I don’t think anybody else could feel right now because it’s like an emptiness that’s going on inside of me, due to the fact I don’t know where she is. And I hope one day soon that we can come together and be the silly little girls that we were when we were growing up, ‘cause I’m still a silly little girl at heart and I want to be with her as soon as possible.”

When she was 10, Dolores Ford moved to Second Street in downtown Los Angeles to live with Glenn and Ramona Wynn. Dolores’ last known address was also in the Los Angeles area.

Watch this case now on Amazon Prime in season five with Robert Stack and in season five with Dennis Farina. Also available on YouTube with Dennis Farina. Various seasons available now on Hulu.




  1. Kacey

    Thanks for the copy and paste


  2. Leslie

    Here’s the update and it’s just as sad….


  3. H. Fernandez

    For anyone seeking an update, this is what I’ve gathered. The case is still unresolved. Records show that Glenn passed away in Gardena, California, in 1988. Other records show that a “Dolores Wynn Henderson” who was born in 1945, passed away in Los Angeles in 1991; however, it is unknown if this was actually Dolores Ford.
    Sadly, Irene passed away in 2012. Her granddaughter reported that she was able to locate some of her birth family, but not all of them.
    Another source, claiming to be a family friend of the Wynns, has stated that Irene was able to locate Ramona and learned, sadly, that Dolores had already passed away. However, the friend claimed that Dolores was able to reunite with Ramona and several of her other children. This information has not been definitively confirmed.


  4. Elizabeth S. Watkins

    Update on this case?? I hope so! Beautiful and heartbreaking.


  5. Chantelle

    I too would love an update on this case x


  6. Rennie Berry

    I have an ending for this story. I am a close friend of Irene Love’s sister Patricia.


  7. Irene helmage

    Yes I’m one of Ramona’s youngest daughter Irene too She named me Irene also and I always wonder why did she name me after my oldest sister name Irene and my last name Helmage


  8. Yvette Wallace

    I was Irene’s daughter-in-law married to her 2nd oldest son – Kim. Irene did find her biological mother Ramona Villa, however, both have passed as well as my husband Kim and her daughter Denene. I stay in contact with some of Irene’s biological siblings on Ramona’s side to this day!


  9. Anonymous

    This might be her, Delores Wynn Henderson (Not Dolores but Delores) birth- 2 July 1945 died- 6 Aug 1991 in Los Angeles, mothers maiden name Villa, fathers last name Wynn. Found on Familysearch website, California death index.


    • Jewel key

      Umm yeah so that cannot be Delores because Delores was a year older than Irene so that would make her birth year in 1941 not 1945


  10. Danyell

    Did they Contact Unsolved mysteries for the update….i hope so glad to be able to search and see what happened.


  11. anais

    i really hope this gets solved i had a similar story happen to me but nothing like this.


  12. RLB

    I knew Dolores. Another of Ramona’s daughters has been my best friend for 55 years. Irene was able to contact Ramona but Dolores had died before then. Irene also connected with other siblings.


  13. Kysen

    Irene died in 2012 unfortunately


  14. Anonymous

    I think Irene should sign up for Long Lost Family. Now, it’s been renewed for next season.


  15. Lyndsey

    Any new updates?


  16. Dave

    I think Irene should go on to Ancestry.com and see if she can find Dolores.


  17. Anna

    They need to hurry up and get an update on this story. This was originally aired in 1993. I mean this is such a beautiful lovely story and i didn’t see any bad blood between familys. Not even with th Bilogical Mother and Father. Try Facebook? hopefully there will be an update soon smh.


  18. Fanny

    Ms. Ford is the Dolores Ford from Chicago instead. I hope they reunity. Such a beautiful story.


  19. Barry

    I don’t know which one. Maybe Dolores Ford from Chicago?


  20. USM

    Which profile Barry? There’s lots of Dolores Fords on facebook – your link goes to the list of them, not to a specific one.


  21. Barry

    Hi there. I was watching all of the episodes of Unsolved Mysteries on both CBS Reality and CBS Drama in the UK. I just googled Dolores Ford Facebook and I think it might help Irene find her sister. All she has to do is to go on Facebook and type Dolores Ford.


  22. Chandra Wynn

    I just was watching this episode and I saw the name Wynn. My father was a Wynn. We are from Texas and I want to know if they had any relatives in Texas.


  23. thomas davis

    the previous comments about addresses makes no sense to me. both comments are referring to Dolores . which one of the comments is actually Irene ?


    • unsolved

      Hi Thomas – Both statements are about Dolores. When she was 10 she lived with the Wynns in Downtown Los Angeles. The last location Dolores was known to be was ALSO in the Los Angeles area, but at a different address. We apologize for the confusion.


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