Half-Sisters Meet for First Time, Thanks to MyHeritage DNA  

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Forty-five years ago, Christine Courtwright’s mother let her in on the family secret. She told her that one day, a woman may knock at the door claiming to be Christine’s half-sister — and that Christine should believe her.

Christine guarded her mother’s secret for decades. Then, earlier this year, she got a DNA Match with the long-lost half-sister her mother had mentioned.

After 67 years, the half-sisters reunited in Florida. Watch their first-ever meeting here:

The background

When Christine was a young adult, her mother confided in her that Christine’s father had a child from before he and her mother had met. Christine wasn’t sure what to think: was this story true? She wasn’t sure, and never thought to actively pursue the question.

Christine as a young adult

Over the years, Christine became an avid genealogist. As a resident of The Villages, a retirement community in Florida, Christine has spent countless hours helping friends research their family history online.

MyHeritage DNA

Christine recently joined MyHeritage to help a neighbor research his own family history. While doing so, she created her own MyHeritage account. After uploading her DNA data, she was shocked to discover a close DNA Match.

It turned out that the match, Liz Cuccinello from Dover, Delaware, had also joined MyHeritage to research her family history. Liz found out at age 15 that she had been adopted at birth but wasn’t given much information about her biological family.

Liz as a baby

She had tried to search for her biological family over the years, but back then, without the online databases we are fortunate to have today, it was much more difficult to do so.

Liz originally tested with another DNA service, but after receiving many distant and irrelevant matches, she decided to widen her search. So she uploaded her results to MyHeritage.

Christine and Liz realized right away that they were, in fact, half-sisters. They began to correspond and speak on the phone, and then, after 67 years apart, they decided they would finally meet.

Christine invited Liz to visit her in Orlando. At nearly 70 years old, she was about to become a little sister.

A reunion 67 years in the making 

Christine waited at the airport with bated breath, holding a bouquet of red roses. Not even knowing what Liz looked like, she paced nervously — but when Liz appeared, Christine knew immediately who she was. They embraced warmly and began sharing stories and jokes.

Christine and Liz embrace as they meet for the first time

Christine remarked how natural it was for them. “Just touching her, I knew she was family.”

They’re so excited to get to know one another and continue their life journey forward — as sisters at last.

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  • Ann Abbott


    September 2, 2019

    DNA turned my life on it’s head. In a nutshell. My controlling mother wasn’t my mother, her younger sister was. My much loved father with interesting family tree as relative of grandmother was a founding member of mormon church, was not my father, my aunt/real mothers much older employer was. My father was away in RAF in Mediterranean/Nth Africa in WW2 My real sisters are long dead and though I have written to children of the youngest nobody has replied other than silent phone calls….. All I’ve asked for is a picture of real father as I remember being taken to the house he lived in, standing across the road with my “mother”. No family of my own. My false mother went to great lengths to make sure I never married and there to take care of her !.

  • murdock


    September 5, 2019

    just looking for other possible relatives