A DNA test has reunited half-brothers Eric Reynolds and Dave Stull who are both cops in Miami FL.
Police Sargent Dave Stull took a DNA test to learn more about his biological parents. He had been adopted as a baby by a Navy pilot and his wife. But after losing his mother to Alzheimer’s 20 years ago and watching his adoptive father die of heart disease just last year, he felt less guilty about tracing his biological roots.
The possibility of brothers or sisters didn’t cross his mind. But what he did find topping the list of 1200-plus potential relatives was that of a half-brother, along with his photo. Eric Reynolds had the same chin but different color eyes. He was also wearing a police jacket, with Florida on it.
Eric Reynolds’ mother had been an officer with Miami-Dade Police in the 1980s and he followed in her footsteps. Reynolds had always known his dad, an Air Force man, was a bit of a womanizer and had been married five times. He has three half-siblings, but he is at least 14 years older and grew up in a different state than they did, so he often felt like an only child.
Reynolds was having breakfast with his police partner when he first found out about the sibling from Florida.
“Good morning, my name is David Stull. We are half-brothers”, the email read. “I don’t know the validity of this but apparently we both live in Florida and we’re both cops.”
Reynolds’ first thought was that he was being scammed, but he ended up texting back. In fact, they ended up texting all day, talking about everything including the fears they both experience as police officers.
Both started in retail security but later joined the police force because they were drawn to the idea of catching bad guys, Reynolds said. They share the feeling that they are warrior spirits and protectors of the flock.
When the half-brothers finally video chatted, it was awkward and hard to focus.
“We’re trying to talk but we’re just staring at each other”, said Reynolds. “I’m looking at his ears, his nose. He’s looking at me the same way.”
They met for the first time at Stull’s house near Orlando, talking late into the night. They then had a brother-bonding RV weekend, just the two of them.
Reynolds (49) said it feels a bit like elementary school, like having a new best friend. The brothers text all day long. Reynolds’ wife jokes that it’s like they’re having an affair. Stull (50) retires next summer, and the brothers are already planning their RV trips together.
“We’ve got 50 years to make up for”, said Stull.
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