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DALLAS - Lorene Turner is still trying to catch her breath.

You just don't know how I feel, said Turner, 63. I'm just speechless.

Thursday night, Bogota appeared on her mobile phone's caller ID.

It was the answer to a prayer.

The Colombian government said it would hand over Turner's 15-year-old granddaughter, Jakadrien, to the U.S. Embassy there on Friday.

Oh I feel good, Lorene added. It was worth it. All the wrinkles under my eyes. I've aged. Look like I'm 80 now. But it's alright. It's okay.

Jakadrien Turner's story is a bizarre one.

She ran away from her Oak Cliff home a year-and-a-half ago, ended up in Houston, got arrested for shoplifting, and lied and said she was from Colombia.

Then - without a thorough check - the U.S. deported the teenage runaway in April 2011.

Her determined grandmother, using Facebook, found her in South America and alerted police.

No, I'm not mad at her, Lorene said. I love her. Children make mistakes.

Thursday night, Colombia issued its own statement saying: She told the U.S. Magistrate she was a Colombian citizen of age. The Colombian consulate in Houston expedited a temporary passport to her. Once she arrived we initiated a search for her family. In the meantime, we did a psychological evaluation, then put her to work in a call center.

Jakadrien even posted that call center job on her Facebook page.

Her reasons for running away remain a mystery.

But that saga is over because of a grandmother who refused to give up.

Exactly when she will return to Dallas is uncertain, but her family said it could be by the weekend.

Still, in this decade after 9/11, why U.S. authorities could not identify a 15-year-old girl is a question troubling many lawmakers.

E-mail jwhitely@wfaa.com

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