Lee was ten years old and Jerry a mere six months old when they were put into separate foster homes. The two brothers wouldn’t see each other again for 26 years. “What most foster kids do is they go through doors as they go through different foster homes and they slam them shut behind them,” Jerry said, “and they don’t go back through those doors.”
Jerry and Lee would be haunted by their past experiences, but together, like Randy Joubert and Gary Nisbet, they would find a way to recreate the family they had always wanted. In 1994, 26 years after the brothers had been torn apart, Lee began to look for his brother through a new technology called Compuserve. He saw his brother’s name, Jerry Gitchel, in a database and sent him an email.
“So I typed in ‘Lost brother. Looking for my lost brother. If you lived in San Diego in the ’70s please respond,’” Lee said. Jerry saw the message and was stunned. Within twenty minutes, they were connected and the rest was history. However, for Jerry, it couldn’t have come at a better time. His daughter Jenny was suffering from diabetic complications. Two days after he reunited with Lee, she died.
“At the exact same time that I had a tremendous loss in my life, I gained a tremendous amount because all of a sudden I had my big brother,” he said. “Even though we were not together physically, we were together, in terms of our hearts,” Jerry said. “We really were.”
See footage from their reunion, and see how the brothers are doing now, twenty years after they found each other below. Please SHARE if you’re glad these two found each other! Let us know what you think in the comments section below.
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