Friends Find Out They're Actually Brothers After Taking DNA Tests

Mark Tolson had decided to try out 23andMe after having a son in search of his own biological father. He was shocked at the results.

Two Texas men who'd been acquaintances for years realized they were biological brothers after taking DNA tests.

Walter Gordy, 37, and Mark Tolson, 36, were introduced through a mutual friend and exchanged phone numbers but didn’t have a super close relationship. That all changed in September when they found out they shared the same father.

In August, Tolson decided to try out 23andMe in search of his own biological father. He was shocked at the results.

“I'm looking at the different percentages of nationalities ... just going down the list. Then I see a part that says, 'DNA relatives,'” Tolson told “I am expecting to find is third or fourth cousins…. Boom, pops up Walt. So I see him and go, ‘I know him.’”

Gordy had already used 23andMe in 2014 because he’d previously had cancer and wanted to see if he might be predisposed to any other health conditions. 

“When I looked at my dad’s side, the closest thing I could find was a third cousin and she was from New York,” Gordy said. “I would go on 23andMe about once a week, sometimes twice a week to see if any updates happened.”

On Sept 19, 2018, Gordy received a life-changing call from Tolson.

“I'm at the park working out and my phone rings. It says, 'Mark,'” Gordy said. “I pick up the phone. We usually don’t talk on the phone generally. He said, ‘I did the 23andMe four to six weeks ago. I got the results today and at the top of the list it says we're brothers, man.’”

Gordy said he was totally shocked and asked to call Tolson back. Sure enough, Gordy's account confirmed it.

The brothers had grown up as only children and both of their mothers had used artificial insemination to get pregnant.  

Adding to the shock, both brothers learned their mothers actually knew each other already. The women did not know, however, that they had used the same fertility doctor or that their sons are related.

Gordy quickly called his mom to tell her the news and when she came home, he showed her a picture of Tolson’s mom. 

“My mom drops the phone on the table. She goes, ‘Oh my God, that’s Wini and we sing in the choir together and I just saw her 20 minutes ago at church,’” Gordy said of his mom’s reaction

After the reality of everything began to set in, Tolson and Gordy were both ecstatic to find out they were brothers. They and their mothers quickly became family and celebrated Thanksgiving dinner together. They’ve since traveled together as well.

“I always wanted a sibling,” Gordy said. “I always wanted it and it never happened.

"With him, it was immediate love.”