Daughter finds birth father with help from ancestry.com - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Daughter finds birth father with help from ancestry.com

Taylor warmed up to her grandfather with a handshake and a high 5. (Source: WMC Action News 5) Taylor warmed up to her grandfather with a handshake and a high 5. (Source: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

One father and daughter celebrated a birthday and belated Father's Day on Tuesday when they met for the first time.

In the crowded Greyhound lobby, Shonquelsa Thomas, a Horn Lake High School teacher, waited with her 1-year-old daughter, Taylor.

"I guess I'm a bit nervous to actually meet him for the first time," Thomas said. "My feelings are everywhere."

At age 18, Thomas's mother shared with her that the father she had always known was not her birth father.

"I said I understood and she said she would do anything to help me find my dad and she did," Thomas explained. 

With the help of ancestry.com, Thomas located her father, Steven Williams. She learned his family lived in Mississippi, and he was in Chicago.

They spoke for the first time on the phone in May and arranged to meet.

A DNA test arranged by ancestry.com confirmed Thomas was Williams' daughter. 

"He saw pictures of me and he was like 'You're definitely my daughter. I don't need anything else,' and he cried and we cried together," Thomas said. 

The two embraced in a moment 25 years in the making after the bus arrived at the station.

"She's everything I imagined," Williams said. "She looks so much like me it's like I had her myself.”

Williams said his bus ride from Chicago was restless.

"When I finally dozed off, I was almost in Missouri, and I said there's no use in going to sleep now I'm almost there," Williams said.

To add to an already memorable day, Tuesday was Williams' birthday. 

Taylor quickly warmed up to her grandfather with a high five and handshake.

Thomas said she believes her future with her father is a gift.

"My life would've been a lot different if I had known him, but all I can do is go forward and hope that it changes for the better going forward and getting to know him."

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