LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A sister and brother met for the first time Saturday night at Los Angeles International Airport with the help of the Internet and science.
The arrivals gate at LAX has millions of stories. But perhaps few reunions as unlikely as Janet Barnicoat and her younger brother Dean Hundorf, who were reunited through DNA.
And not even the TSA could break their first embrace Saturday night, when Hundorf arrived from Minneapolis.
“I’m fulfilled now. I’m complete now,” Barnicoat told KCAL9’s Christy Fajardo. “Overwhelmed with joy.”
“It’s still unreal to me,” Hundorf said. “I don’t know what feelings I’m feeling. I never thought this day would come.”
In 1981, Barnicoat was abandoned as an infant in an alley in Lawndale. Five years later Hundorf was found left on a porch in the Pacific Palisades.
Both infants were adopted into loving families, but even a lifetime could not silence questions about their origins.
That’s why divided by years, and several states, Barnicoat, now living in Hesperia, and Hundorf, a Wisconsin resident, submitted DNA to an ancestry website.
“I was interested in my ethnic makeup,” Hundorf said. “And this was something I never would have dreamed of.”
He never dreamed he had a likely half sibling, and he would have an unlikely reunion. He has nieces and nephews to meet.
“I don’t know what to say,” said Hundorf.
There is lifetime to find the words. But both now leave behind a lifetime of yearning to be bound by blood.
“I’ve waited my whole life for this.” Barnicoat said. “And I know he has too.”