*All names have been changed
Search goal: Find Donovan’s biological father
Donovan had reached out last year for help with finding his biological father. He had done an AncestryDNA test in hopes of finding him. Though Donovan had been born in Canada, he knew he was conceived in California. So I took a look at his matches and got to work.
Donovan’s parents had distinct ethnicities so it was easy to see which matches were paternal, and there were a lot of them! He had two paternal matches in the close family range. One of the women had a tree, and one didn’t. They looked to both be around his age.
I took a look at the tree of the top match, Chanelle, and could tell she had been also looking for her biological father. Chanelle’s tree had research symbols on some of her ancestors, and I recognized the symbols as ones that an American DNA search group uses. I actually help out with the Canadian branch of this group, so I messaged an admin of the group and explained Donovan’s search. I sent her screenshots of the research symbols, which had Chanelle’s search angel’s initials on them, so they knew who had helped Chanelle.
I was added to a group chat with Chanelle and her search angel, and I caught up with the search. They were pleased to hear Donovan was also searching as they were curious about him and had reasoned that he was likely a half sibling, along with the other close match. Both women were from California as well and had been unknown to each other before DNA testing. They had identified their birth father as a man named Walter, and had been in contact with some other relatives, but not him directly.
With a little bit of searching, Donovan’s wife found probable contact information for Walter, and Chanelle’s mom decided to call him. Thankfully, he remembered her, and although he was very surprised to hear that he had 3 new grown children, he was willing to communicate with them all. Eventually they all had a video chat, which went well. Donovan is happy to have found his biological father as well as several more half siblings from Walter’s side.