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Mike Anderson, Deseret News
Biological siblings and their members of the family who had been reunited by DNA testing celebrate an early Thanksgiving together in West Jordan on Friday, Nov. 16, 2018.
WEST JORDAN — Growing up, JanaLe Fox regularly questioned why she appeared like such a lot of other people in her small fatherland of Farr West, Weber County.
Born in Denver and followed right into a Utah circle of relatives as an toddler in 1959, she says she knew “very little” about her organic circle of relatives.
Fast ahead just about 60 years, Fox came upon her circle of relatives used to be a long way higher than she may have guessed — with the assistance of DNA testing.
Fox, the oldest of 2 kids in her adoptive circle of relatives, at age 58 came upon she had 16 organic half-siblings. And on Friday, she shared an early Thanksgiving meal with 3 of them.
“It’s been an amazing year,” Fox mentioned. “It is seriously so fun, because for the last 58 years, I’ve been the oldest. And 30 of those 58 years, I’ve been an only. And I currently am the baby of 16.”
The collection of occasions that led as much as her finding she used to be the youngest of 16 started in February, when a lady contacted Fox to look if she used to be certainly one of 3 adoptees to finish a circle of relatives tree.
Fox, of Thatcher, Idaho, quickly came upon her organic father used to be a farmer and truck driving force who took place to reside “just down the street” from her within the small Utah the town when she used to be a kid. She even went to university with a lot of his grandkids.
Two days later, she mentioned, Carlene Tuft contacted her and instructed her that they had matched on Ancestry DNA and may well be half-sisters.
“I sent JanaLe a message, and she sent me a message back,” Tuft mentioned. “We went back and forth, and boom! We’re sisters. It was great.”
When Fox asked her beginning certificates from Colorado, she discovered that she and Tuft did percentage a organic mom.
She additionally discovered that she used to be her organic father’s 9th kid and her organic mom’s 7th kid.
The explanation why she resembled such a lot of in her the town?
“I did go to school and graduated with many nieces and nephews, along with first cousins by the droves,” Fox mentioned.
Four of her 1/2 siblings are nonetheless alive, whilst the remaining have gave up the ghost.
The first time Tuft and Fox reached out to their two dwelling half-brothers, Fox mentioned, the lads “knew nothing” of the ladies however believed their mom had long past to Denver to visit college.
On Friday, the 4 reunited half-siblings met at Tuft’s West Jordan house for a Thanksgiving dinner party 58 years within the making.
“Not many people get two families in their lives, and it’s just amazing,” Tuft mentioned. “We’re all so accepting immediately of everybody, and (there’s) an instant bond.”
Contributing: Mike Anderson