Journey of a Lifetime…

Be yourself; Everyone else is already taken.

— Oscar Wilde.

The adventure began six years ago when my husband, Jeff, spit in a tube, stashed his DNA sample in an envelope and mailed it to Ancestry. Jeff had always known he was adopted. Born Clarence Gordon Payne to a single mother in Corner Brook, Newfoundland, in April of 1953, he was adopted by Clinton and Eleanor Dodge four months later. They renamed him Jeffrey Carl Dodge. Respectfully, I’m not sure “Clarence” and I would have ever got together!

Clinton Carl Dodge, with his new son, Jeffrey Carl, 1954

Clint was a senior master sergeant in the Air Force and stationed in Newfoundland for four years and Eleanor was thrilled to have a baby to nurture. When Jeff was adopted, he was extremely malnourished, weighing only 7.5 lbs. I’ve been fattening him up ever since!

Jeff has always demonstrated an interest in family history to the point that he researched and found multiple volumes of “Dodge Family History”. This was difficult for me to understand as there was no biological connection.

I had grown up in a family in New Albany, Indiana, where we knew our roots back through several generations, were surrounded by aunts, uncles and cousins, where family born on “the hill” (Silver Hills) often stayed and raised their children and grandchildren there. Eight of my nine cousins, from one family, still live there.

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