Amanda Berry's grandfather Troy Berry looks through family photos at his Elizabethton, Tenn., home. Berry and the rest of the family were relieved after Amanda was rescued after 10 years in captivity in Ohio.(Photo: Larry McCormack, The Tennessean)
By Mary Scott / WBIR-TV Knoxville
The attention of the world has been focused on Cleveland, Ohio, this week, after three women who had been kidnapped more than a decade ago, were found alive.
One of those women, Amanda Berry, has ties to East Tennessee. Her father, grandfather, and other extended family members live in Elizabethton.
"Nobody believed it. It was unbelievable," said Troy Berry, Amanda's grandfather, "She never gave up."
They are, of course, thrilled that Amanda is alive, but the emotions are mixed. They worry about the ordeal that she's been through, and how she will recover.
"It's been crazy. Everybody's happy, emotional. [We're] crying still too. It's just unbelievable. This stuff doesn't happen after a decade, not with this outcome," said Amanda's first cousin, Crystal Milton.
John Berry, Amanda's father, has talked to his daughter twice since Monday, which he called the best day of his life. Both conversations lasted around 10 minutes, and we're full of "I love you's" and "can't wait to see you's."
John Berry is unable to travel right now, because he just had back surgery. He says if he was able, he'd be in Ohio right now. They are hoping Amanda can come visit him soon.
He says despite it all, he always knew he would see her again.
"Always. I always had hope. I never give up hope, no. I couldn't. I knew how good she was, how smart she was. If there was any way out of it, she'd find it. She had the nickname Commando. That's what I nicknamed her when she was little. She loved to fight with me and she was such as good kid. A tomboy, wasn't no pushover girl," said John Berry.
Her grandfather says Amanda always enjoyed visits to East Tennessee as a girl, and he can't wait for their reunion.
"She'd have stayed down here forever, you know, if we would have known, we would have let her but you never know," said Troy Berry.
"We went camping... and played hide and go seek. We were very close, like sisters because I never had a sister," said Milton, of Berry's visits to East Tennessee.
Now that her family has heard her voice and seen photos, they hope to see her for themselves.
Milton and Troy Berry said they hope to make a trip to Cleveland within the next few weeks.
Photos: See Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus pictures
Photos: Gina DeJesus, Amanda Berry come home
How to help: Charitable fund set up for missing girls
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Details: Women only outside twice in past 10 years
Police audio: Police audio reveals how officers found women
Found alive: Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus found alive
DeJesus homecoming: Gina gives a thumbs up
Amanda Berry homecoming: Family thanks community
Charges: Charges announced against Ariel Castro
Court appearance: Ariel Castro arraigned, bond set by judge
Castro family: Ariel Castro's family mortified to be related
Charles Ramsey: Listen to 911 call that led to Amanda Berry rescue
Charles Ramsey: Neighbor tells how he helped rescue Amanda Berry
Ramsey t-shirt: T-shirt for sale honoring Charles Ramsey as a hero
Michelle's mom: Michelle Knight back in hospital
Inside the house: Details emerge about house where victims held
Padlocks in house: Suspects' son says Seymour house had padlocks throughout
No human remains: No human remains found at home where women escaped
Jaycee Dugard: Cleveland women need opportunity to heal
Rude dispatcher?: Police investigate dispatcher's handling of Amanda Berry's 911 call
Castro Brothers Id'd: Three brothers identified in missing women case
Timeline: Gina DeJesus
Timeline: Amanda Berry
Watch: Last 10 years looking for Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus
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Family celebrates: Amanda Berry's family celebrates
911 Call: Help me I'm Amanda Berry
Police: Amanda is the real hero here
Family shocker: DeJesus family reacts to Gina's return
Arrest: Ariel Castro and two brothers arrested in Amanda Berry case
Inside the house: Safety director talks about home where Berry, DeJesus were held
Out of the HOSPITAL: Three missing women released from hospital
Mayor reacts: Mayor Jackson talks about the release of the three missing women
WBIR-TV / Gannett