Google search found a sibling Elizabeth didn’t know she had.
A long-lost brother and sister have finally met after nearly 70 years and realised they grew up just streets apart.
For decades, Elizabeth Brown, 67, had no idea she had an older half-brother called Jim Masterton who lived just yards away in Lochore, Fife and even went to the same school.
But earlier this month, the pair met after Elizabeth, nee Masterton, stumbled on the discovery.
Elizabeth, who also has a brother and a sister, said: “It was a shock to discover I had another brother but a nice surprise.
“Now I look forward to getting to know him and making up for all that lost time.”
It was only by chance that Elizabeth started researching her family tree.
“Finding Jim happened by accident,” she explained. “I was reading our local church newsletter when I saw a notice for memorial dedications.
“It was coming up for the birthday of my mother-in-law, who passed away five years ago, and I thought it would be a nice way to remember her.
“But I’d forgotten her old address for the form so I typed her name into Google to find it and discovered things online I didn’t know about her.
“I was so intrigued I put my granny Masterton’s name in. She was my dad’s mum and died when I was seven.
“People always said I looked like her so I wanted to find out more about her.”
It was then Elizabeth spotted a link to genealogy site, themastertons.orgElizabeth, who now lives in Clackmannan, said: “It had our whole family history.
“My dad, Richard, passed away when I was just 18 and his name was there. It said he had a first and a second family.
“Thinking the information was wrong, I emailed the site manager and he said he had a copy of a birth certificate.
“He put me in touch with the man who’d provided the document, and it turned out he was Jim’s son, my half nephew!
“I was absolutely blown away.”
Elizabeth’s father met Jim’s mother, Margaret Gillespie, during the Second World War.
Jim was born in 1940 and brought up in Lochore, Fife where Elizabeth was born five years later.
Throughout their school years, the pair lived just 300 yards apart. But they remained in the dark about each other.
Richard visited Jim and paid towards his upkeep, but never disclosed his existence to his other family.
For months, Jim, 72, who emigrated to Victoria, Canada in 1967, and Elizabeth have been in email contact.
And this summer he flew to Scotland to meet his sister and the rest of the Masterton family.
“It was amazing to finally meet Jim,” Elizabeth said. “It’s like we’ve never been apart.”
Jim added: “It’s been fantastic to meet Elizabeth. I only wish we’d done it years ago when dad could have been here to see it.”
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