*All names have been changed.
Search goal: Find Terra’s biological father.
Terra reached out for help with finding her biological father. She had tested with AncestryDNA and had found her maternal side. She also had a maternal half sibling that had tested, so this helped split her matches up. She also had some non-identifying information about her biological father, including birthdate and number of siblings.
I started to sort Terra’s paternal matches and saw that they sorted into two groups- one of Russian ancestry and one Norwegian. The matches were decent, about at the second cousin range and had trees, so I started first with the Russian group and started building a tree. After finding the common ancestors, I started working back down, and found that one of their grandchildren had married someone with a Norwegian last name. So I looked at that spouse, and sure enough, Terra had matches from the Norwegian side too. All of the matches were lining up to prove that Terra was descended from the Russian+Norwegian couple. I noticed this couple had 6 children- 3 sons and 3 daughters.
After putting the tree together and confirming the connections, I asked Terra if her biological father was listed as having 5 siblings. She was surprised and said yes, that was correct! He had 3 sisters and 2 brothers.
One of the brothers had died recently, and he was several years younger than the birthdate Terra had on her papers for her biological father, so we knew it was going to be between the two older brothers.
Terra reached out to both brothers and their sisters too, hoping to hear back from someone and get the connections started. She got in touch one of her aunts- the youngest sister, who helped confirm which brother was Terra’s biological father. He was very happy to chat with her and they plan on meeting soon!