Online Research Unites Siblings After 75 Years - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Online Research Unites Siblings After 75 Years

Eleanor Nelson West and Hawkins Mayor Sam Bradley have the same father.   But for their entire lives, they never knew where or who their half-sibling was.  Years of research, along with help from the Internet, has paid off.  

"I guess I thought basically, I'd never run across [a sibling], but anytime there was a Nelson, I was going to ask questions," said Bradley, who knew Nelson was the birth name for his lost sibling.

For Sam and Eleanor, it's not another chapter in life.  They're writing the book.

"[On] the third of June, all the pieces of the puzzle fit," Bradley says.

It's been more than half a century since Sam's father Arthur Marvin Bradley told him the family was larger than Sam thought.

"He never told us anything about this except that I had another sibling.  He didn't tell me it was a sister or it was a brother," he said.

For Eleanor, Arthur Bradley was only a name on her birth certificate.  After a lifetime of wondering, she finally told her son Glen to look for the other side of the family.

That was years ago.

"I really didn't know [Glen] was still doing it.  I had kind of forgotten about it," she said.

Glen says the discovery happened just weeks ago.

"He [wasn't] anywhere that we contacted.   And we put it on Google," Glen West said.

Using the Internet, the truth was told.

"I was just on cloud nine. I was ecstatic," he says.

Now both families are catching up -- wishing those who have gone on could have had the chance to know the truth, but determined to use the time now for the best.

"We got at least 75 years to make up," Sam Bradley said.

Eleanor replied, "Probably not too long to make it."

"But we'll live fast," Sam said.

Sometime in the next year, the Bradleys and the Wests are planning a huge family reunion to discover and share stories. 

Glen West said while it took years for him to do the research, he said it's now easier than ever for anyone to find family ties, using the Internet.

Reported by Morgan Palmer.

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