SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Life has thrown some twists along the way for Jeffrey and David Baron -- the first of which came when the twin brothers were 11 years old.
“I looked at all my classmates and they looked like their parents,” Jeffrey said. “I went home that day and said, ‘Mom, were we adopted?’”
Having always looked exactly like one another, these identical twins questioned why neither of them physically resembled the people raising them.
“We were 11 years old. She said, ‘Yes, you were,’” Jeffrey recalled.
The next major twist came 50 years later when David got a phone call.
“I was stunned. After 61 years, you know, I just thought it was just him,” said David, as he pointed to his brother. “The first thing she says to me is ‘Please don’t hang up.’"
The person on the phone was Julie Powers.
“I asked him, ‘Please don’t hang up on me,” said Julie Powers with a chuckle.
Powers has had a lifetime of twists of her own.
Starting back when she first took a look at her birth certificate more than 20 years ago and discovered the identity of her birth mother.
“She was the first one I called,” said Powers.
Her name was Doris Gentry and she lived somewhere in Florida, where “Gentrys” filled the phone book.
“I asked her to sit down first,” said Powers. “I asked her the question, ‘Did you give up a baby for adoption?’ and I said ‘I believe I’m one of your daughters.’”
Doris and Julie spent the next four years getting to know each other. Her birth father had already passed.
Another twist to this story: Doris Gentry had 11 children.
“She said, ‘I gave up a lot of children in the 50s and 60s,’” said Powers.
Seven of her children were given up for adoption. Gentry and her husband couldn’t afford to take care of them.
“The first thing she did was hug me and her first words were, ‘I love you,’” Powers said.
Julie then began searching for her siblings.
Getting help online through an adoption community forum where she shared her story. A woman who specializes in finding lost family members offered to help find her twin brothers.
After more than 20 years, Julie's search ended after she discovered Jeffrey and David Baron were living in Arizona.
“I called up one of them and he sounded just like my mother,” said Powers. “Are you a twin? He said ‘Yes.’ And I asked if he was adopted, and he said ‘Yes.' I said ‘I think I’m your sister.’”
Over the next few months, Julie, Jeffrey and David shared pictures and stories just over the phone.
“We do look like our biological parents,” said David. “It started soaking in.”
Despite the distance and the lifetime apart, they realized phone calls weren’t enough. So Powers and her husband packed up their car and drove from South Carolina to meet her big brothers in person.
With nervous excitement three days later, the lost siblings found each other for the first time in Scottsdale. An emotional meeting that had everyone in tears.
“I saw one and I saw the other and I didn’t know who to hug first,” said Powers.
“I’m just beside myself. I just still can’t believe it,” said David.
The three are now making up for the lost time.
“Thank God this day came. It’s just incredible. I can’t believe she’s here. I can’t believe she’s right here. I can’t believe she’s here,” said Jeffrey.
Together now, but missing the birth mother who brought them all into the world.
“She would be tickled. That we’re together now,” Powers said.
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