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Is he my Grandfather or not?

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  • Is he my Grandfather or not?

    76A23B30-1F9E-4284-9C86-ABA82148B14F.jpgI’ll keep this short and use a picture to ask my question. I have a suspicion ,and I think pretty damning evidence, to support that suspicion. But before I I fully come to a conclusion, I want to make sure I didn’t miss anything. In this pic, Ed is Amy and Jason’s grandfather. Larry is Jason and Amy’s 2nd cousin, yet neither Amy nor Jason share any DNA with Larry. From what I’ve gathered, that’s genetically impossible. So, I figured the best way to confirm my suspicion that Ed is in fact not Mikes dad, I’d get Jasons and Amy’s only first cousin, Dave, to take a DNA test and see if he is a match to Larry. If Dave comes back as a match for Larry, is that enough genetic evidence to conclusively say that Ed is in fact not Mikes dad?
    Last edited by Daffypuck; 7 September 2022, 05:03 PM.

  • #2
    Under your hypothesis that Mike isn't Ed's son, but Dave is, Dave should ALSO not share DNA with you or Amy, right? Or, if there's a shared grandmother involved, Dave would test out as your half first cousin instead of a full first cousin (although there's some overlap that may make the result ambiguous). The relationships on paper are close enough that there's no way you should find a true second cousin who doesn't share DNA with you. The normal range for second cousins is about 75 cM to 360 cM. Your methodology is just right: get as many "known" relatives as possible tested, and see what happens, and when an unexpected result turns up, try to get more samples to confirm it. Another way to add to the analysis is to find some relatives of Ed's wife. Another bit of evidence that you and Dave don't have the same grandfather, would be if your Y-DNA doesn't match. Whatever samples are available, test as many as you can and see what possible family trees are consistent with the results.


    • #3
      No, Dave is Eddys son and Mike is Dave’s uncle. Eddy and Pat are twins born before Mike. Ed and his wife both have blue eyes. Eddy and Pat both have blue eyes. Mike on the other hand, has brown eyes. While it is possible for two blue eyes parents to have a brown eyed child, it is very uncommon, almost rare. Dave is Jason and Amy’s 1st cousin. I am certain his father is Ed’s child, therefore his dna should be a match with Larry, the 2nd cousin.
      Last edited by Daffypuck; 7 September 2022, 09:05 PM.


      • #4
        Also, that is it on test samples. Ed had 3 sons and 2 of those sons produced 3 offspring, that’s it. The mothers are irrelevant in this equation. If Eddys son, Jason and Amy’s 1st cousin Dave, is a match to Larry, I would presume that means that it is Ed that is the link to that match. Since Jason and Amy aren’t a match to Larry, then Ed, being the only link to Larry’s father and Grandmother is not Jason and Amy’s grandfather, nor Mikes Dad. Jason, Amy and Dave are all 1st cousins to each other and all three are 2nd cousins with Larry. All 3 should share some dna with Larry. If Dave ends up sharing dna with Larry, that should be the deal breaker. The real conundrum will be if Dave isn’t a match. That would mean one of a few things, like Rose and Ed aren’t biological siblings, despite their birth certificates, Bob isn’t Roses bio-son, or Ed isn’t the father of any of his boys.
        Last edited by Daffypuck; 7 September 2022, 09:03 PM.


        • #5
          If you and Amy truly share absolutely no DNA with Larry, here are some other possibilities:
          1. Ed and Rose may not have had the same parents. One may have been adopted. That could explain why you share no DNA with Larry. But in this case even if Ed or Rose only shared one parent, you would still share some DNA with Larry.
          2. Bob was Larry's father. But maybe Bob was adopted, or it could be that Bob may not really be Larry's father. But if Dave matches Larry as a full or half 2nd cousin that would squash those theories.
          3. If Dave matches Larry, another possibility is that Mike may not be your father.
          4. You could also check to see if Dave matches you and Amy. Dave could show as a half-first cousin to both of you, if grandfather Ed was Eddy's father, but not Mike's father. Mike, Pat and Eddy could still have had the same mother (your grandmother).
          Is your father or his sibling Pat living and would either test? Of course your father's results would answer if he is or isn't your father. Testing Pat would show if he (she?) had one or both of the same parents as Mike. Like Dave could be your full or half first cousin, Pat could be your full aunt/uncle or half aunt/uncle.

          Have you checked census records to see Matt and Hilda's children through the years, and Ed's family? There might be a clue there.​

          Note: it took me a while to post this, before I saw the other comments. I see that John McCoy had some of the same ideas as I did.
          Last edited by blanko; 7 September 2022, 09:24 PM.


          • #6
            Unfortunately, all are dead except the last generation. Mike is definitely Jason and Amy’s dad and Eddy is definitely Dave’s dad. According to birth certificates, Hilda and Ed are bio siblings. Assuming all is true, if Dave comes back as a match to Larry, is that definitive evidence to say that Ed is not mikes dad?


            • #7
              I think your implications are correct, but perhaps you and Dave should be doing Y-DNA testing to see for sure if Ed is your common ancestor or not. Having a Y-DNA test will give you a headstart with your likely next question.


              • #8
                I am certain that Ed is the patriarch of the family, but wouldn’t an ancestry dna kit answer the same question? If Dave is a match with Larry, I would assume Ed is not my grandfather.


                • #9
                  Nevermind! I didn't read what you said correctly.

                  Are all of the kits on Family Finder? Have you uploaded them to GEDmatch?


                  • #10
                    No, these are Ancestry kits. Thanks just do t like asking questions on Facebook. This forum looked a bit more well versed on the subject than your average FB user. I’m glad you mentioned GEDmatch. What is the significance of that?


                    • #11
                      Many people assume what they've always known to be the truth. But DNA does not lie, especially not for identifying relationships between people. Your best plan is to have Dave do an autosomal test at the same company where you and Amy and Larry have already tested. His relationships (or non-relationships) to the rest of you should answer your question. Once you have Dave tested, you will know more.

                      I don't mean any disrespect or to cause grief by suggesting the other possibilities. You are probably right in your reasoning, I'm just putting out some other possible situations besides the obvious one.

                      If Dave matches Larry, but doesn't match you and Amy, then you've narrowed it down to your grandfather Ed not being Mike's father. This is only true if you and Amy share enough DNA to show your relationship as full siblings, since that would prove you both have the same two parents. There's also the rare possibility that for some reason, Mike was not the father of you and Amy, but you both had the same, other father; you'd still be full siblings in that case. Just another possibility, even if it's far out.

                      There are charts to see relationships using the amount of shared DNA. These are based on the Shared cM Project. Latest version: Example for full sibling: average 2613 cM, range 1613-3488. You can check the amounts for other relationships (2nd cousin, half-cousins etc.) at the link. Also even easier the DNA Painter website has a tool using data from the Shared cM Project: Just plug in the amounts and you can see the possible relationships and the percent chance for each.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Daffypuck View Post
                        No, these are Ancestry kits. Thanks just do t like asking questions on Facebook. This forum looked a bit more well versed on the subject than your average FB user. I’m glad you mentioned GEDmatch. What is the significance of that?
                        The matching process on Ancestry is not very transparent and the user does not have access to a chromosome browser. By uploading the kits to, you could check the matches there and see which segments they match on. Also you have access to a database which includes kits from other vendors. If you do choose to upload the kits to, I would be glad to take a look at them for you.


                        • #13
                          Good suggestions from georgian1950 for Daffypuck. It is a failing of Ancestry that they don't have a chromosome browser. You could upload the kits to GEDmatch, and also to FTDNA or MyHeritage. Both of the last two will let you see your full match lists for free, and unlock other features for a fee ($29 for MyHeritage, $19 for FTDNA). Uploads to GEDmatch are free, and allow using some tools, but some other tools require a subscription.

                          Some other points to consider.

                          If you find out that Mike's father wasn't Ed, yours and Amy's DNA match lists might show some half second cousins, or even a half great/grand aunt or great/grand uncle, who might be related to Mike's actual father. Maybe you can tell who they are by the ancestry of such matches. These might be obviously different from Ed's ancestry, or Ed's wife's ancestors or your mother's.

                          For YDNA, wait to see if Dave turns out NOT to be Jason's and Amy's first cousin. If he doesn't match them, then Jason doing a YDNA test might be useful because it could show a lot of YDNA matches who have one surname that is different than Ed's surname, and no matches with Ed's surname.​ Could be useful if you want to know the real father's surname for Mike. If Dave matches Larry as full second cousin, then having Dave do a YDNA test would give you the haplogroup for Ed and Matt. Besides finding that out, I don't think a YDNA test for Dave would be useful because the autosomal test already would have told you if there is a relationship or not.

                          Wait for a sale to do any YDNA tests at FTDNA. But start with testing Dave at Ancestry.​​


                          • #14
                            Amy and Jason are actually half-siblings, same father. If Dave is a match to Larry, then that also means that Dave is actually only a half-1st cousin to Amy and Jason. I know dna is a finicky thing when it comes to distribution, but if that’s the case and Dave ends up being a half-1st cousin, I would presume that his shared cM total with Amy and Jason would be less than the norm for full 1st cousins.
                            One thing is for certain, Mike is Amy and Jason’s father, beyond a shadow of a doubt. Dave is also 100% Amy and Jason’s half 1st cousin at least.
                            Being that Amy and Jason share the same father, it helps when figuring out which distant matches are on Jason’s mothers side and Jason’s fathers side. I know, not definitely since we’re all related, but it can help initially.
                            Thanks for all of y’all’s help. I appreciate it. How do I upload GEDcom? Where do I get the info to upload?


                            • #15
                              Agree with all of the above. More data is always better.

                              To upload your Family Finder autosomal data to GEDmatch, look at your FTDNA home page. Under Family Finder, there is a See More button, which connects you to Data Download. Take the third option of Concatenated Data.

                              At GEDmatch, you will have to create an acct. Follow directions. When you are registered, you will see a Generic DNA upload on the right side. Again, follow the instructions.

                              An upload can take 1 to 2 days to completely process, although you can start looking after 8 hours to see if your data finished calculations early.


                              If you want to explore the Y37, you could test now. Most FTDNA Y sales are modest. The one that just ended was $119 to $99. Not a huge discount, so maybe better to do it now. (There might be a better sale in Nov/Dec). If you purchase now, you could have results by Nov 1.

                              You get a basic haplogroup out of Y37 (in addition to the 37 markers). You can also get simple haplogroups out of AncestryDNA raw data by looking at YSeq CladeFinder.