June 3, 1992: Long-distance friends to meet at last

November 22, 2017

After 43 years of a friendship through the mail, Judy Trevena will meet her long time penfriend face-to-face.

Judy Trevena has a friend so close, they liken them to sisters - yet they have never met. 

Forty-three years ago, the then Echuca teenager was handed a piece of paper with a name and address on it of a potential English penfriend. 

Of all her classmates who were lined up with a penfriend that year, Judy thinks she may be the only one still in touch with her own. 

And now Judy, 53, is preparing to meet face-to-face the woman she has corresponded with since her first week of high school.

With her husband, Terry, Judy will soon fly to England to meet her long time penfriend, Margaret "Maggie" Lutkin of Amersham in Buckinghamshire.

"Last time she wrote to me she said she would send an up-to-date photo so we would know what she looks like at the airport. 

"But I said there was no need, I know I would pick her face out of a crowd," Judy said from her Shepparton home yesterday. 

The penfriends have grown together through the mail, and their friendship has not been without its uncanny coincidences.

Like only a week's difference in their age, marrying two months apart from each other, and both having two children around the same age - their youngest children were born just one day apart.

Year's later Judy's oldest daughter, corresponds with Maggie's oldest daughter, who so happens to be married to a Trevena!

"We don't know if he is a distant relation, but we will delve into that when we get to England," Judy smiled. 

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