NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – After nearly six decades, two brothers who were adopted when they were just infants are reunited at last.
Randy Rogers and Lafe Jones found each other through genealogy websites and Facebook, with a DNA test confirming they were full biological brothers.
Before the match, the pair had no idea the other existed.
The brothers are two of 13, with their other 11 half-siblings growing up in Fayetteville.
The family shares the same mother, but Rogers and Jones also share the same father and are the only two who were put up for adoption.
Jones remembers the first day they met in person, meeting up at a cafe in El Dorado a few weeks after sharing emails.
“I felt like I was almost looking in a mirror,” Jones admitted, remembering the emotional reunion.
“I kept staring at him across the table,” Rogers agreed.
Jones grew up in Louisiana, while Rogers stayed in Arkansas. Both men started looking into their past only a few years ago; a curiosity about their family history driving them to begin research.
Jones discovered his half siblings first from adoption papers, but a DNA kit was what led him to Rogers.
“I didn’t find out a whole lot until I started going forward with more DNA testing,” Jones explained.
Adoption records were sealed by the state until 2018, making it even more difficult to track down family.
For Rogers, he took a DNA test a few months later, receiving emails about distant cousins and relatives before one stood out.
“The next day,” he remembered, “I got an email that said I had a full sibling.”
Rogers grew up as an only child. He says the discovery that he not only had a full sibling but also 11 half-siblings was a shock.
On Friday the duo headed to northwest Arkansas to introduce Rogers to the rest of the family, one of the final puzzle pieces in the brother’s past.
The pair say they are still missing half of the picture, though. They now know more about their biological mother but have little information on their dad.
“Our next step is we’re going to continue to investigate who our father is,” Jones said.
The brothers also agreed to spend more time together now that they’ve been reunited and say the support from their families, both biological and adopted, has been incredible.