Last Sunday was a landmark occasion for 18-year-old Skyler James, and not just because she celebrated graduating from high school.

For the first time, she got to meet the firefighter who, on a bitterly cold November morning in 1995, found her — a newborn baby — abandoned beneath a snow-laden pine tree in an Illinois cemetery.

The air was brutally frigid that night and emergency workers could not find the infant left in a cemetery after an anonymous caller named the location where she’d left a baby.

A volunteer firefighter, Charlie Heflin, used his intuition and went back a second time to check around the tree once more. Then he heard the whimper.

Both the graduate and her savior were moved to tears with gratitude for the reunion

(READ the story from TODAY)

Photo courtesy of the James family, who adopted her shortly after she was rescued

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