A Woman Spent Years Looking For Her Sister. Then A Neighbor’s Parcel Revealed An Insane Coincidence

Hillary Harris knew little about her biological family, but she had her parents’ names, as well as the name of a long-lost sister. Armed with that information, she spent several unsuccessful years searching for her sibling. Then, her neighbor received a package, and the amateur sleuth realized something shocking about the person living next door.

Wisconsinite Hillary Harris, 31, was adopted as a baby and didn’t know about her biological parents. That is, until she gave birth to a daughter of her own in 2011. Then, she started doing research into her own background.

From the agency in charge of her adoption, Harris learned the names of her biological parents. She was then able to find her mother, but the 32-year-old told the New York Post that the meeting didn’t go as expected.

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“When I met my birth mom I thought I would have this tingly feeling and an immediate bond, and I didn’t,” Harris said. But their reunion did reveal piece of information. The 31-year-old and her brother, Tyler, were born after her mother had an affair with Wayne Clouse.

Unfortunately for Harris, she’d never get the chance to meet Clouse. He sadly passed away in 2002, nearly a decade before she began her research to trace her roots. However, she did uncover her dad’s obituary, which told the curious mom more about her family tree.

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The obituary revealed that Clouse had two other daughters – Dawn Johnson and Renee Diericks. It went on to say that Johnson was from Greenwood, Wisconsin, and she once reigned as queen of the Loyal Corn Festival in 1983.

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Still, the information wasn’t enough for Harris to find Johnson on Facebook. “I was having no luck with Dawn. I was beginning to think that I’d never find her,” the amateur sleuth told People magazine.

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Then, in June of 2017, a new set of neighbors moved into Harris’s Eau Claire, Wisconsin, neighborhood. Fifty-three-year-old Kurt Casperson and his partner considered over 20 different properties before they bought their new two-bedroom home.

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For Harris, it wasn’t Casperson’s arrival that gave her pause, however, it was his partner’s. “For me, something first clicked in June when I found out her name was Dawn and she was from Greenwood,” she told the New York Post.

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Harris only knew the woman’s first name, of course. That didn’t stop her and her husband, Lance, from pretending their new neighbor was also their relative, however. “[We] joked for a few weeks that she was my sister, but we didn’t know her last name,” Harris said.

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“We both laughed and said, ‘No way. No way that could be,’” Harris added to People magazine. But two months later, a huge package arrived next door, which gave her the chance to find out her neighbor’s surname.

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Harris saw that her neighbors had received an extra-large delivery of roof shingles. On top of the pile of supplies, someone had placed an eye-catching red-hued sheet of tarpaulin – and marked it with the customer’s full name, Dawn Johnson.

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Harris couldn’t contain herself after finding out her neighbour’s last name. “I screamed and jumped all over the house, then called Lance and said, ‘Her name is Dawn Johnson! It has to be her,’” she said.

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With that, Lance insisted the he and Harris go and talk to Johnson to find out the truth. But Harris couldn’t work up the courage to ask her neighbor about her father face-to-face. “I was just so nervous, and I was worried about rejection,” she admitted.

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That night, though, Harris was ready, so she grabbed her phone. She told the New York Post, “I began to shake. It was such an intense moment. It was late at night, but I finally got the courage to text her.”

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Using the information Harris learned from her father’s obituary, she composed a text to send to her neighbor. She told People magazine that she asked Johnson, “Were you the Loyal Corn Fest queen in 1983?”

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“LOL, why are you asking that?” Johnson responded. It was then that Harris said she “decided right then to go for it.” Her next text to her neighbor read, “Who is your birth father?” Johnson replied, “Wayne Clouse.”

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Understandably, Harris said she “started hollering and freaking out.” Then, she picked up the phone and called 50-year-old Johnson right away. “We were on the phone for hours that night, crying and talking. Neither of us could believe it.”

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It turned out that Johnson never asked her biological father, whom she met when she was 18, whether she had any siblings. “I was as shocked as Hillary was to learn that we were sisters,” she said, “We even share a driveway. We are literally 20 feet apart. How does that happen?”

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But whatever forces brought Johnson and Harris together have united them in a big way. Indeed, the pair serve as inspiration for others in similar shoes. “We’re pretty much inseparable now and we know this was meant to be. Our story is living proof that it pays not to give up,” Harris said.

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