Susana Boggs, a 50-year-old doctor’s assistant from Richmond, Texas, was raised without a father. Though her mother never spoke about it, there was a family friend named Nano who sometimes came to Susana’s birthday parties, and her sister suspected that he might have been Susana’s father. However, after Susana turned 12, Nano stopped visiting and they didn’t see him again. Years later, Susana did a MyHeritage DNA test, and a match with a cousin led her to confirm that Nano was her biological father and to reconnect with him at last.
Watch their moving story here:
A man named Nano
Susana and her sister were raised without a father. She remembers that, as a child, at every birthday, a friend of her mother’s named Nano would visit her. He would bring his two children and give her presents.
It was her sister who pointed out that perhaps there was more to Nano than meets the eye. “I always thought he was a friend of the family, but one time my sister, who was 4 years older, told me: ‘Nano’s daughter looks exactly like you! Nano is your father,’” Susana recalls. “I got mad and told her it’s wrong and asked her to stop saying that. The fact is that Nano was very tall, and I was much taller than my sisters and my mother.”
Not long after Susana’s mother remarried, Nano stopped coming to visit Susana on her birthdays. She now understands that the new husband must have been uncomfortable with the relationship between Nano and her mother and didn’t want Nano to come to the house.
Susana was never close with her stepfather. Over the years, Susana would ask her mother about her biological father, but her mother refused to answer. Not long ago, Susana’s mother moved in with her, and Susana tried once again to uncover the truth about her biological father. “I asked her again and again, but she didn’t give an answer about my father’s identity or about Nano,” says Susana.
MyHeritage DNA to the rescue
Eventually Susana realized she would have to uncover the truth on her own, and this past April, she purchased 2 DNA kits. When her results came in, all she saw were matches to distant relatives.
But then, months later, Susana received a notification of a new DNA match. It was a woman in her 20’s named Ruby Morales who shared 3% of Susana’s DNA — meaning she could be a first cousin once removed.
“I decided to send her a message asking her if she knows a man named Nano and wrote that it’s urgent,” Susana recalls. “I thought to myself, ‘She will probably think I’m crazy, but I’ve nothing to lose.’” She hoped to get an answer, but prepared herself for the possibility that she wouldn’t get one.
The next day, while Susana was at work, she saw she had a new message on MyHeritage. It was from Ruby. She had replied that yes, there was a man in the family who everyone called Uncle Nano.
Susana was overcome with emotion. “I started to cry. I went to get some fresh air, because I felt that I couldn’t breathe. I wrote back to my match that I’ve been looking for Nano for many years and asked her to give him my phone number.”
She went back home and obsessively checked her phone, hoping to get an answer. “I went to bed but couldn’t sleep,” she says. “Suddenly, I got a message in Spanish on my mobile phone: ‘Hi, my name is Lori, Nano is my uncle.’ I called her and she told me that she visited Nano and he asked her about my mother and siblings’ identity and said that we are immediate family.”
Lori sent Susana a photo of her as a baby, that Nano had always kept in his wallet. Nano, whose full name is Servando De Los Santos, had been looking for Susana for many years, but couldn’t find her because she had changed her name when she married.
Reunited at last
Nano had two other children who were Susana’s half-siblings. Unfortunately, Susana’s half-sister — who she remembers vaguely from the birthday visits — passed away from cancer not long before Susana took her DNA test. It is a bittersweet gift for Nano to welcome the daughter he’d been missing for so long back into his life so soon after losing his other daughter.
Nano and his son Armando (Susana’s half-brother) drove 12 hours to meet Susana in her home for the first time. They were overjoyed and overcome with emotion to meet again, this time as father and daughter. They hope to see a lot more of each other going forward. After all, they have a whole lifetime to catch up on.
Do you have a mystery in your family waiting to be solved? Order your MyHeritage DNA kit today.
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Source: My Heritage