Rich Crandall took an AncestryDNA test at a family reunion for fun. He never expected to find anything more than his ethnicity, but what he learned was so much more. When he received an email from Ancestry with his match results, it showed an extremely close match to a woman in California. Surprisingly, there in print on the screen was the name of his birth mother, Pam.

Crandall had always known he was adopted as an infant. The adoption was closed, and the records were sealed. He had never really been that curious about the details of his adoption or interested in reunion. But the discovery of his birth mother’s identity started to tug at him, breeding questions. He made contact five days later.

Pam found out she was pregnant in 1967. She was 19 years old, and her boyfriend took off as soon as he heard about the pregnancy. A few years ago she found out she had colon cancer. She immediately hired a private investigator to find her son. Pam wanted to update his medical information with her diagnosis since early detection is so important. Her search was unsuccessful.

Later, Pam’s sister convinced her to take a DNA test for ethnicity reasons. She never dreamed it would be a path to her son. The pair is taking their time getting to know each other, and things are going well. Pam is excited to learn about her many grandchildren, and the families plan to meet sometime in the future. Pam requested that her last name be withheld for the sake of her adult daughters.

Since the time of their first contact, Crandall has made a long, detailed post on Facebook about his experience in an effort to warn others who are considering DNA testing. You just never know what you might find, and you should be emotionally prepared for anything.