An Adoptee Discovers Her Biological Roots
Have you imagined trying to find a family member, without knowing their name where they live or whether they are still living? How do people removed from their parents through separation and adoption find their family members? DNA and Genealogy can provide the answers to these questions. Here’s the story of how I helped one man reunite with his father after 30 years.
On April 14, 2016, I started a Facebook thread for about a dozen other people of color who shared a common 3rd great grandfather, a former slave from rural South Carolina. One member of the group, ViElla explained that she could not fathom her connection to this antebellum ancestor, because she was missing one detail-she did not know her biological parents.
ViElla was born in Florida, and as per their closed adoption policy, she was told scant details by the agency: she was born to a young woman in Alachua County with the maiden name Walker who was 17 or 18 years old at the time of her birth, and later married to a man named Davis. A quick search of the marriage record database at Ancestry.com revealed that there was only one such couple who married in Alachua County. Within hours, the adoption agency confirmed, and ViElla reunited with her biological mother’s family through social media.
That’s when she sent me this message:
“My closest DNA match, a second cousin needs your help. He is on Facebook and a graduate of Rutgers…Lamar Carter”