What In The Entire Hell?!? Woman Discovers Dead Husband Was Actually Her Father

September 19, 2012  |  

Source: Valerie Spruill (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal)

When it comes to families, there are often a couple of skeletons that come tumbling out of the closet. But none are probably half as bad as the secret 60 year old, Valerie Spruill, of Doylestown, Ohio discovered after her husband passed away in 1998.

The secret was that her husband was also her father.

Yes, you read that correctly. Valerie unknowingly married her father.

So, how did all of this happen?

At 9 years old, Valerie learned that the man and woman she thought were her parents were actually her grandparents. The woman, who her family called “the night lady,” was not just a family friend but her mother. That’s when the true details of Valerie’s life started to unfold. Her mother left her in a taxi at 3 months old, shortly after that, she was sent to live with her maternal grandparents permanently.

Eventually, she met and married Percy Spruill, the man she would later learn was her father. Valerie admits that there were always strange rumblings regarding her marriage but she never understood them. It wasn’t until 6 years after her husband’s death, that her uncle came forward and told her the truth.

Valerie collected a hairbrush with Percy’s hair still in it. They tested the hair and found out Percy was, indeed, her father. Valerie said she couldn’t be sure whether her father knew she was his daughter or not, but said she’s inclined to believe he knew and just didn’t want to say anything.

As you may imagine, getting over something like this is no easy feat. Valerie has been in therapy since she learned the secret in 2004 and fights the urge the hate him.

You can understand her pain, considering every memory from her marriage was based on a sick lie.

By now, you may be wondering why Valerie decided to go public with such a gut-wrenching story. Don’t think she wasn’t warned. Her brother suggested she not, claiming it would expose all types of family skeletons. I don’t know about your family, but the skeletons don’t get anymore gruesome than this.

But Valerie was unswayed. She told Ohio’s Akron Beacon Journal that she replied with, “Well, I’m not a skeleton, and I’m hurt.”

Valerie says she wants her story to serve as an inspiration to others. She said, “If I’ve come through this, anyone can come through anything through the help of the Lord.”

She also wanted her story known just in case she has other brothers and sisters out there. It’s uncertain whether Valerie’s parents, who met when they were 15, had other children together. Valerie, who made amends with her mother before she died in 1984, has a message for any potential siblings she may have.

“My biggest goal is to find them and let ’em know that [their mother] loved them, no matter what. And [to tell them], ‘Thank God she gave you away like she did me, so you could have a beautiful life.”

If you’re like me, you’re probably wondering if you would have gone public with this story, if it was your own. I can’t really say, but I do commend Valerie for her courage. While her story is unbelievable, I’m sure there are others who are struggling with some of the hurt inflicted at the hands of their own parents. If her painful story helps someone else, then it’s worth it. If she connects with siblings who never knew they had a sister out there, then it was worth it.

Aside from all that maybe sharing her story in such a public way is additional healing for Valerie.

“If this old lady done come through all this, and God’s still got her here and still with a good heart — because you find so many mean, vicious people in the world, and you don’t have to be — you can love no matter what you’ve come through or where you’ve been in this world.”

It’s not just Valerie’s story, but her reaction to it that provide a message to all of us. No matter how bad it may seem, we can all overcome the hurt in our own lives.


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  • readyfor2012?

    In another article I read on MSN, she said he was her second husband and treated her three children by her first husband well. It didnt say how long she was married to him. It did state that her children are supportive and that she told her grandchildren just before coming out publicly. She said they surprised her by how well the are supporting their grandmother. Wow, imagine how they are viewed in Akron? She seems to be starting a new family trend by being honest and bringing the family shamefulness to the light. May God give her strength.

  • If her family knew who that was, why didn’t they say something? Was it some kind of horrible joke. See what happens when people keep secrets.

  • tko101

    Some people will take sh>t like this to they grave!!!!!!!!!! I bet her dad know the turth!!!!!!!!!!!

  • chanela

    This is what happens when people take ” none of my business” too damn far! it’s ridiculous how they didn’t tell her anything. there are certain times when you DO tell people something. SMH

  • kierah

    This story sounds so fishy. She acts like she didn’t hear the rumors until after marriage. Why wouldn’t she address any of the rumblings? How do you NOT investigate this particular rumble? What kind of family sits on these kinds of suspicions? With a father-daughter relationship, you can’t even let those two go on a date. Once you find out they dated, somebody needed to speak up.

  • Kyle Morris

    that father/husband does not deserve the God’s forgive

  • Ms_Mara

    Ugh this story almost got me to cussin. Why the hell did the uncle wait so long to tell her? Obviously someone knew before they got married. That sounds like one sick family. I’m glad she’s in therapy because just reading that twisted my mind all up. The article doesn’t mention it, but I hope they didn’t have any children together

  • This is crazy and I find it very hard to believe. There is no way I would not tell someone that the person that are romantically involved in is their relative. How likely is this to happen that no one in the family spoke up? The husband was dead for 6 YEARS and she still had a brush at the house with his hair in it? Come on! Something just don’t sound right here. Then again, maybe it’s just me. Sigh…..

  • Leanna

    WOW! The family members that knew about this are dead wrong. There is no reason for allowing a family member to marry their FATHER!!! Poor woman!

  • JaiRhed

    This makes me wanna vomit

  • KJ23

    I’m so mad I feel like falcon punching my own laptop screen!!!! How dare they?! Her family did her bogus!!!! I wouldn’t have anything else to do with them!!! This has just made me so angry!!!!!!!!!!

    …Uncle finally told her… just ANGER!!!!!!!!!

  • Kay

    What in the bloody hell?.. I’m not even British but that’s the. Only way to properly curse and get pass the sensors… This is some Lifetime/hallmark movie type shittt

  • IllyPhilly

    This will be a movie one day. I would seriously examine her family’s heads for keeping this from her.

    • Caydence James

      I hope to God it isn’t a movie. We’ve got enough embarrassments hanging over our heads now. If they do, I hope they do what they normally do in movies with us in it and change the race of the lead character. Make it a situation in a trailer park instead! ;-/

  • Candacey Doris

    How could they think it was okay NOT to tell her! Therapy indeed!

    • Cheequa

      Remain steadfast in the Lord praying, worshiping and praising!! Only he can cleanse this sh*t. And take the daddy’s/husband’s social security check and “keep” going to board certified therapy the rest of her life.

  • Whaaaa? If I were her, I’d cut my family off. Yeah we make mistakes and hold information back, but if these people really loved her, they wouldn’t have sat back and watched her marry her own FATHER. That’s inexcusable. Valerie is a strong woman and I hope she gets all the support and help she needs.

  • Tagirl

    Her family was flagrantly wrong for not telling her what they knew!!! Omg!

  • Smh.. This some Color Purple mess.

  • UmOk

    Raise your hand if you scrolled right to the comments on this one… *raises hand* I knew yall were probably going in….lol….but….um….wth? Let me read this freakin article…..

    • UmOk

      Oh wow!!!!! They should have told her! Why whisper and talk behind her back all those years??!! This is sick!

  • Trisha_B

    Ok, there is tooooo many unanswered questions! Her father knew but didn’t say anything? So he liked this whole incest relationship? How long were they married for? Do they have kids together? Why was her mother called the “night lady?” Why would her family keep quiet about her husband being her father? o_O this is some weird Lifetime stuff. I don’t want to judge but seriously, this is crazy lol. Oh geeze, i’m glad she’s getting help. i don’t like the whole family secretes. My grandmother is schizophrenic & i went w/ my mom & aunts to see her in the hospital. Well grandma was spilling some secrets & my aunt & mother kept trying to make her be quiet & kept telling me to ignore her, it’s the medication, etc. But i knew better. They forgot they told me Grandma was doing 100 times better, & she was in the right frame of mind lol. The elders of families don’t know how much damage their doing to their kids when they keep secrets.

    • kierah

      Yes she and her dad had 3 kids. Wonder how they feel right about now?

      • MLS2698

        My next door neighbor was a product of two first cousins marrying ( not a hidden fact). I was fifteen when we moved next to them, and the first thing they spoke about was being cousins, and how they were attracted to each other at a young age. Well, their daughter, an only child, is the craziest thing you ever seen, and HATES what her parents did. Her parents are both dead now, but she IS NOT over knowing how she came to be, and she is not a young woman, either.

  • Wow

    Wait…her family knew that the man she married was her dad and they never thought it important to tell her? Wow how trifling can people be!!!

  • Let’s just hope that if there were any children were from this union of a daughter and her estranged father/husband that they seek professional help quickly.

  • jaimuziq

    I feel nauseous!

  • Ai

    I would be PISSED at the realatives who knew and let that crap play out.

  • I saw this nonsense earlier and what I don’t understand is how people around her knew and didn’t think it was important to tell her! You just goin’ hold that information away from me and then talk about it behind my back…that’s some bullish if I’ve ever heard some!

    • MImi

      I agree….I just don’t understand that no one said anything until after he died. What kind of mess is that? They all watched her commit incest with her father. He was sick for marrying his daughter.They are all sick and disgusting!!!!

      • MLS2698

        I don’t understand why the lady in the picture is smiling as if she just won something!

        • Cinnamon71

          Ikr? I was thinking the exact same thing. I would have had a nervous breakdown. Thank God they didn’t have any children.

          • Vee Mack

            So for something that was not her fault and out of her control, she should have a breakdown and not smile? Everybody is not weak mentally. …. Sometimes a smile hides the pain felt on he inside.

            • MLS2698

              keyword: hide

        • CocoB

          LOL i did wonder the same thing!!! she should be CRYING AND WANTING TO KILL HER FAMILY MEMBERS

          • donalda

            I would. I would murder all them MFs.

        • MImi

          I was hoping this was an old picture that she used for the article.

      • NSimonefan

        She has one sick family. She should disown them. Seriously. What good are they to her? Their no good.

        • Trisha_B

          She disown them & one of her kids might end up w/ their cousin & not even know since the family likes to keep those things on the hush hush smh

          • NSimonefan

            She should still disown her family. As far as her children are concerned, tell them that before they screw someone, have a dna test done; problem solved. As a master of fact, if she has any grandchildren, she should tell her children right now to have a dna test on the other male or female parent, just to make sure that they are not cousins.

      • chanela

        because too many people are caught up in ” that’s her not me” and ” it’s none of my business” instead of helping others. that is not a real damn family at all if they can’t tell her something THAT important just so they won’t be considered in someone’s business. “snitching” and being in someone’s “business” is the worst thing a black person can do apparently…even if it could potentially help someone

    • Caydence James

      I agree…. these are black folks…..and you know how we are about kin. I mean, even if you’re a 5th cousin once removed, as far as we’re concerned, you’re a COUSIN and that is that!

      So how in the world could this have possibly gone down and no one said anything? Or was it that she wasn’t willing to hear it? Sorry but you got to be a simpleton not to catch on that something might be wrong. Not to mention her father/husband. You mean he didn’t leave a clue that he knew? What’s his deal?
      I don’t know. Something is wrong with this story. You got a mother who left her kid in a cab, then the grandparents talk about the mother like she’s a family friend when she’s actually their daughter, then she grows up and marries her father and no one tells her and she doesn’t think something is wrong? Uhh uhhh….frankly with this much dysfunction they need to scrap the whole gene pool because there’s something dreadfully wrong with it too!

  • Whoaaa….did they have any kids together? Because that would really be messed up. Anyway, I’m glad that she is sharing her story, and that she’s on the path to healing. Nothing can be rectified if it stays bottled up. But her family is at fault too; they should have told her about this sooner, instead of allowing her to stay in that marriage all those years. But there’s also a bigger issue here about people not knowing who they are and where they come from. I’ve heard stories of people marrying their siblings by accident because they didn’t know about each other. And when you think about how people, both male and female, have kids all over the place, it’s not that impossible.

    • NSimonefan

      Her and her father had three children together. I don’t get why people will deceive a child into thinking their the parents, when they are actually the grandparents. That was the case n this situation as well.

  • victoria

    I recall reading a similar story regarding a brother and sister.
    This is disgusting. And Im sure the father knew or at least had an idea. And the uncle is a mess for not telling her that it was possible he may be her father.
    People will read this and still think it’s ok to have kids with people they barely know. ”Cuz, Im gonna take care of mines…”

  • Reese

    This is what happens when people have kids all over the place and they don’t know each other. A few years ago, I was seeing a guy come to find out his grandfather and my grandmother were first cousins. Moral of that story know your people.

    • RubyRose

      Ive been saying this for years now these brothers keep having these babies all over the place and if these sistahs dont take it upon themselves to extend their hands to there childrens siblings theres going to be more of this type of thing happening between brothers and sisters. A sad frightening fact.

    • Janine

      His grandfather and your grandmother being first cousins means that you share great-great grandparents and you’re third cousins. THIRD COUSINS. That’s basically nothing. I would hardly call that a gross incestuous relationship. On average, third cousins share 0.781% of their genes in common – that’s less than 1%.

  • FromUR2UB

    Forget all that “finding out if she has other siblings out there” stuff. This should be a wakeup call to people to make sure their kids know who their relatives are, or at least what they look like. Ugggh! Gross! Her father had to know she was his daughter, because if people were talking about it, some of that had to get back to him…or he knew all along. Why do people think they’re doing a justice by keeping these kinds of secrets from people?? Someone should have told her, even if they only had suspicions but weren’t sure. Gaaaah!! Glad I didn’t grow up in that family.

    • Reese

      Agreed, I never understood these deep family secrets. What is covered doesn’t heal, period.

    • Janine

      I was adopted at birth (closed adoption, no idea who birth family is), and I often wonder if I’ve ever accidentally slept with my father or brother. Shudder.

  • L-Boogie

    No disrespect but that is sick.