The man who raised Kamiyah Mobley as his own daughter for 18 years was devastated to learn his ex-girlfriend had actually abducted her from a Florida hospital when she was a baby.
Charles Manigo says he only found out he was not Kamiyah's biological father last week when his former partner Gloria Williams, 51, was arrested in South Carolina over the girl's abduction back in 1998.
Manigo told ABC News the couple had named the girl Alexis Kelly Manigo after Williams led him to believe she had given birth to her while he was away.
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Charles Manigo, the man who raised Kamiyah Mobley as his own daughter for 18 years, was devastated to learn his ex-girlfriend had abducted her from a Florida hospital as a baby
Charles Manigo told ABC News he was devastated to learn the daughter he had been raising was not biologically his
They raised her in Walterboro, South Carolina as Alexis Kelly and even shared custody of her when they split in 2003.
He said he was there for all of his daughter's milestones, including her prom.
'She was the love of my life,' Manigo said.
'One of the hardest things she said on Friday was, 'Dad I love you,' even though she knows what's going on.
'She's still my child. I understand what's going on, but she's still my child.'
Kamiyah was reunited with her biological parents Shanara Mobley and Craig Aiken on Saturday just days after learning the shocking secret of how she was snatched at birth by the woman who raised her.
Williams is thought to have suffered a miscarriage about a week before she drove the three hours from South Carolina to Florida and abducted baby Kamiyah in 1998.
It is believed she then passed off Kamiyah as her own daughter to family and friends, who said they never suspected a thing.
Williams was arrested on Friday at her home and will be extradited to Florida to face charges of kidnapping.
Charles Manigo said his ex-girlfriend Gloria Williams had told him she had given birth to the baby in South Carolina while he was away back in 1998. She is thought to have suffered a miscarriage a week before she kidnapped Kamiyah from a Florida hospital
Kamiyah Mobley, now 18, was found living in South Carolina on Friday living under the name Alexis Manigo. Gloria Williams, 51, was arrested on Friday for kidnapping the girl from Florida
Kamiyah Mobley, 18, posed for a selfie with her biological parents Shanara Mobley and Craig Aiken in an emotional family reunion on Saturday in South Carolina
Kamiyah posed with her biological parents for their first-ever family photo when they met behind closed doors at the Colleton County Jail where Williams is currently in custody.
After spending nearly an hour with his daughter, Aiken, 41, said of seeing her for the very first time: 'It was the best day of my life. It was a beautiful, beautiful day. We are so happy. I hope the world is rejoicing with us.'
Aiken, whose wife Shannon was also present, said they chose not to discuss the alleged kidnapping, instead focusing on getting to know the daughter he and Shanara feared they would never see.
'We laughed, we chatted, we didn't allow any negative thoughts. We didn't talk about the kidnapping,' he told Dailymail.com
'It's going to be hard for her to turn this into a positive. She's got very mixed emotions about the woman who raised her.
'But we are going to be there for her, this is just the start of a wonderful future.'
Charles Manigo says he only found out he was not Kamiyah's biological father last week when his former partner Gloria Williams, 51, was arrested in South Carolina
Kamiyah Mobley, pictured with her birth mother Shanara Mobley on Saturday, was snatched from her mom's arms in a Florida hospital in July 1998 when she was a newborn
Kamiyah Mobley (left in a composite created by police) was kidnapped by a woman pretending to be a nurse (right) 18 years ago
The mystery of Kamiyah Mobley became a national sensation when she was stolen from her mother Shanara Mobley's arms at the University Medical Center in Jacksonville in July 1998.
Authorities revealed Kamiyah had an inclination' some months ago that she may have been kidnapped before Williams was arrested on Friday.
Kamiyah burst into tears as she said goodbye to Williams as her abductor waived extradition to Jacksonville, where she will face kidnapping charges.
'I love you mom,' she told Williams as the two shared a moment, separated by a mesh screen in the Colleton County Jail.
My mother raised me with everything I needed and most of all everything I wanted. My mother is no felon.
Williams blew Kamiyah a kiss as the teenager cried out 'Momma' and told her abductor she was 'praying' for her.
Just hours after police revealed that Kamiyah had been found, she took to Facebook to defend her abductor.
'My mother raised me with everything I needed and most of all everything I wanted,' she wrote. 'My mother is no felon.'
Jacksonville police said the teenager found out on Friday morning that the woman who raised her in Walterboro her whole life was not her real mother.
Within hours Manigo was able to reconnect over FaceTime with her biological parents, who both cried 'tears of joy' after a detective told them their baby had been found.
Meanwhile Williams, who also has two biological children who grew up with Kamiyah, will be extradited back to Florida as soon as possible and is being held without bond, according to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.
She could face up to life in prison if convicted.
'I love you mom,' Manigo told Williams as the two touched hands between the mesh screen
Williams then waived extradition to Jacksonville, where she will face kidnapping charges
The news came as a shock to neighbors who said Williams seemed like any regular member of the community.
Williams was employed as a social worker and attended church every Sunday, where she also led the youth program.
She had worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs' hospital in Charleston and also volunteered for Habitat for Humanity, according to CBS News.
'The family is a good family,' said Ruben Boatright, who has known Williams for 15 years and watched Kamiyah grow up.
'You don't want to think bad thoughts of anyone in your family, and that she would do something like that,' he told WJXT.
'But then it's right there staring you in the face. So you don't know what to say or do.'
Boatright said Kamiyah was a well-mannered teen who was 'very well read' and 'disciplined'.
He said his opinion of Williams hasn't changed, despite the news.
'She did that 18 years ago,' he said. 'Eighteen years ago she was a young lady and you don't know what her emotional state was then.'
Boatright said the surprising news has spread like wildfire in the small community.
'At the fish market, the hair dresser, the gas station, they're all talking about it,' he said.
Investigators are currently speaking with Williams' family to learn more about the abduction. Authorities have not yet determined Williams' links to Jacksonville.
Tears of joy flowed freely for Kamiyah's biological parents Craig Aiken (pictured left on Friday) and Shanara Mobley (pictured right in 1998 after her daughter was abducted)
Just hours after police revealed that Kamiyah Mobley had been found, Manigo took to Facebook to defend her abductor
A cousin of Gloria Williams said the revelation was 'brand new to all of us.'
Tesha Stephens spoke briefly with reporters on Friday outside the Walterboro home where Kamiyah was raised.
She said she didn't know how the young woman discovered her