Oct 1, 2018 - Ancestry

23andMe Connects Brothers


A Korean adoptee living in Tennessee as a kid, Ben rarely saw kids that looked like him.

Pickler & Ben Host Kellie Pickler (left), with Ben and his brother Jeff, and Host Ben Aaron.

“Growing up, I knew very few Asians, let alone Koreans, and always wondered if I actually still had family somewhere in this world,” said the 29-year-old Air Force sergeant.

He was happy and felt fortunate to have been adopted by such a loving family, but he always wondered.

Several hundred miles away, Jeff, now a 27-year-old public relations man, had been going through the same thing.

While his parents sent him to a Korean school each Saturday to try and keep him connected to his Korean ancestry, Jeff wondered about his origins.

“It may sound trivial, but I’ve never met someone who resembles me,” he said.

That all changed after the two men — half brothers — connected using 23andMe.

“By some weird chance, we joined 23andMe within a year of each other,” Jeff said.

Connected using 23andMe, the two emailed, texted, and talked on the phone, but they hadn’t met in person until this September when the talk show Pickler & Ben brought them into the studio.

Check out their story here.

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