Gerald’s search

Search goal: Find Gerald’s biological parents

*All names have been changed

This search was a family/friends search that I actually completed in May but for some reason hadn’t typed up until now. So, here it is!

Jessica and her aunt Wilma were searching for Wilma’s dad, Gerald, in hopes of learning about his biological parents. Gerald had since passed away, but his family was hoping to learn more about his origins. Wilma had done an Ancestry test and they had some theories but wanted me to look into it some more.

Since Wilma’s mother was not adopted it was easy to split the matches using Leeds- there were four distinct groups which is always nice and very helpful.

I started on the first paternal group that had the highest matches to Wilma. I could see that the common last name was Derksen so I began making a mirror tree and quickly found the common ancestors. From there, I started working back down. The common ancestors had about 9 kids, and I figured that one was one of the biological parents of Gerald. There were several matches to children of the 9 kids, with many being all around the same centimorgan level, but one in particular named Lawrence was double the cm of his cousins- so I knew right away that his father was the biological father of Gerald! Lawrence’s niece was also a perfect half first cousin match to Wilma.

With the biological father being found, I turned my attention to the other paternal group of Wilma’s. This group was connected through the last name Van der Meer, and although the matches were not as close, there were several more matches than the Derksen match group so it was again quite easy to make a mirror tree. I found the common ancestors, then I worked back down, and it came down to between three daughters that could be the biological mother of Gerald. Only one of them had had a descendant, named John, that had taken an Ancestry test, but he was a perfect half first cousin match to Wilma. I figured his grandmother Anna was biological mother of Gerald- the age and locations all lined up too. The centimorgans shared by John and Wilma would also be too high to be second cousins, so it was not either of Anna’s younger sisters.

With that, another search was complete, and Jessica and Wilma were happy to learn some more about Gerald’s origins.

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