ExpressUK: Mental Health Worker Reveals She is Winston Churchill’s Granddaughter


AFTER more than 30 years of ­trying to find her family roots, a mental health worker in America has discovered she is the granddaughter of Sir Winston Churchill.

Rhonda Noonan, 56, knew she had been adopted and that her ­father was an important British figure. Yet discovering his identity ­turned into a real mystery.Now Rhonda, from Tulsa, Oklahoma, has discovered her father was Sir ­Winston Churchill’s only son, Randolph.She details her story in her new book, The Fifth and Final Name – Memoir of an American Churchill.Rhonda found her adoptive parents, Jim and Jeanlee Noonan, had been vetted by Author of The Fifth and Final Name, Rhonda Noonanthe FBI, and that when a judge ordered the ­release of her adoption files, the government department holding them appealed against it and won.

Like almost everyone who is adopted, I wanted to know where I came from

Rhonda Noonan

She met the man named as her father on her birth certificate, only to learn her mother was ­already pregnant when they met.

Even her natural mother, Irene Pruitt-Gaffard, lied when ­finally traced and refused to co-operate when the lies were exposed. A stroke of luck came when Rhonda found Polly Hunt, a Department of Human ­Affairs official named in the case papers when Rhonda was born on July 8, 1956, was in the Oklahoma City phone book.

At first she agreed to help but then refused. Years later ­Rhonda tried again and Ms Hunt finally ­revealed Randolph Churchill was her father and she had been there when he came to sign the papers.

Rhonda said: “Like almost every- one who is adopted, I wanted to know where I came from. I wanted to connect with someone who I ­belonged to, and I hoped they would recognise that I was someone who shouldn’t have been thrown away. It was that simple.

Sir Winston Churchill
Rhonda knew her father was an important man in Britain


“There was no desire for fame, power or wealth, and in terms of the latter I wouldn’t be entitled to anything even if my case were proved. I’m comfortably off and don’t want anything material from the Churchills, or anyone else.”

She has tried to place Randolph in Oklahoma nine months before her birth. He was a reporter for The Times and travelled with his friend Averell Harriman, who tried to secure the Democratic presidential nomination in 1952 and 1956.

In 1955 he travelled with Raymond Gary, his ­running mate. Gary was Governor of Oklahoma and Harriman and Churchill were frequent visitors in the mid-Fifties.

Rhonda said: “I realise that without the DNA tests I can’t prove it 100 per cent but I don’t really care any longer. I have been content these past few years that I finally know who I am.”

Written by: Marcello Mega

Read the original article at Express UK online  posted on February 24th, 2013.




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