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She Was Researching Her Father’s Birth Family. Instead, She Found Her Long-Lost Half-Sister

Wesley Saucier uploaded her DNA to MyHeritage with the goal of learning more about her father’s origins. She never expected to find the half-sister her mother had been forced to place for adoption 50 years ago.

In 2020, Wesley decided to take advantage of the COVID lockdowns for family history research. Her father was adopted, and she was hoping to learn more about his background. She decided to take a DNA test, but didn’t receive any significant matches.

Wesley Saucier

Wesley Saucier

Determined not to give up, Wesley joined a family history group on Facebook, and was advised to upload her DNA results to MyHeritage. So she did — and a few days later, received a strong DNA match.

“It showed a name and a last name, and it said a potential match of half-sister or niece,” says Wesley. “But she was older than me, so I thought, well, that’s less likely she is my niece.” Wesley recalled that her mother had told her about a child she had to place for adoption many years ago, and understood that the match was probably her. “I called my mother and gave her the news. The silence over the line said it all, and then she started to cry.”

‘I even had a name for her’

“I was praying and hoping because I’d been looking for her for years and years,” says Wesley’s mother, Angela. “I guess that Wesley, at times when I thought she was probably sleeping, she probably found me at the computer crying through the years. She knew how desperately I was hoping to find her.”

Angela was 18 years old when she got pregnant out of wedlock. When Angela’s mother learned of the pregnancy, she gave her daughter an ultimatum: either she could place the baby for adoption, or she could leave home. Angela felt she had no choice.

Angela at 18. Photo enhanced and colors restored by MyHeritage

Angela at 18. Photo enhanced and colors restored by MyHeritage

Angela at 18. Photo enhanced and colors restored by MyHeritage

For years, she searched for her lost daughter, and wrote letter after letter to the adoption agency hoping that they would reach her. “I even had a name for her, that I gave her before she was born. I called her Ami Bleu,” says Angela. But after so many years of trying and failing to reach her daughter, she assumed it would never happen. “I had come to feel that she probably didn’t want the contact. I didn’t want to intrude if it wasn’t something that she wanted.”

The daughter — Winona — was raised by loving, supportive parents. Because the adoption was closed, she had no information about her biological family.

Winona as a baby. Photo enhanced and colors restored by MyHeritage

Winona as a baby. Photo enhanced and colors restored by MyHeritage

Winona as a baby. Photo enhanced and colors restored by MyHeritage

Recently, her adoptive parents encouraged her to take a DNA test so she could learn about her background in general. None of them expected her to find any family members, but they were all thrilled at the discovery.

‘It took two years for us to get together’

After several emotional conversations between Winona, Wesley, and Angela, they planned to meet face to face… but hit a serious obstacle. Out of nowhere, Angela fell ill and was hospitalized in serious condition.

“We had scheduled a time where we could all come together in Louisiana,” says Wesley. “A couple of days before we were all supposed to meet, my mom was found kind of loopy on the floor of her apartment and not responsive, and it ended up being a two-week hospital stay where we thought she was never going to recover. And we thought, wow, we tried to make this meeting happen and it’s not going to happen.”

Angela was diagnosed with encephalopathy and underwent two surgeries before she began to recover. “She started speaking again one day and we thought, oh my gosh, she’s back to normal now. We can plan this trip again. It took two years for us all to get together,” says Wesley.

‘I kept wanting to pinch myself’

As dedicated lovers of Christmas, they finally met at the Hilton Hotel under the fir trees and Christmas décor. A few cousins and their children were also present to meet each other for the first time.

Angela embraces her daughter for the first time in 50 years

Angela embraces her daughter for the first time in 50 years

Watch Wesley telling her story and the moment of reunion in the video below:

“I was surprised that I wasn’t nervous at all, and I was not surprised by how familiar the hugs felt,” says Winona. “It felt like hugging family. Our conversations happened so easily too. I have a tendency to feel a bit uncomfortable and shy while getting to know people, but I didn’t feel that at all. The whole family immediately felt like family. I love being able to say ‘my sister’ too!”

Wesley, Angela, and Winona

Wesley, Angela, and Winona

“When she walked through the door, I was so giggly,” says Wesley. “We’ve been waiting to meet her in person for three years. I thought she was so tall in pictures but was relieved to know that she’s short like me!”

“The whole time the three of us sat and chatted, I kept wanting to pinch myself because the story of Ami Bleu (Winona) was an unsolved mystery I grew up hearing from my mom,” Winona goes on. “One of the many pain points in her life that would never heal. And with all the people in the world, I assumed I would eventually have to pay a fortune for a private detective. I’m glad I didn’t. I’m glad I let my curiosity take over. My mom is glad that I know how to use the computer.”

Many thanks to Wesley, Angie, and Winona for sharing their incredible story with us! If you’ve also made an amazing discovery with MyHeritage, we’d love to hear about it. Please send it to us via this form or email us at stories@myheritage.com.

The post She Was Researching Her Father’s Birth Family. Instead, She Found Her Long-Lost Half-Sister appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

Source: My Heritage

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