Thursday, November 24, 2016

Family Ties

As most of us celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends today, imagine the relatives we have yet to meet. Who are they? What’s their name? Where do they live?
It’s no secret I enjoy genealogy, and I incorporate discoveries as plots in my Guilty/Jamieson Legacy series. I’ve uncovered identities, scandals and even connected with black and white descendants. One particular day, my family research took a surprising turn.
One of my kinfolks was sitting at the desk next to me. The revelation came when she mentioned Sikeston, Missouri, a small city a few hours from St. Louis.
I said, “I have cousins there,” and gave Annada my maiden name.
She had Coles in her family too.  I started calling off names, but when I mentioned elderly cousin Earl from Mobile, Alabama, the connection was made.
Annada got on the phone and called cousin “Goat,” someone I had never heard of.
When I went home that night, I pulled up the family tree chart and was able to connect the dots. The names she mentioned were descendants of one of my grandfather’s many siblings.
Amazing. For years, I’ve tracked down kinfolks for my genealogy research by visiting different cities, making strange phone calls, and pouring over censuses and other documents from the 1800s.
It’s still mind boggling that a short term job assignment in my home town brought me face-to-face to an unknown cousin.
A similar situation happened to another cousin in Chicago. Birda had worked with a woman for years. When her coworker died, and she attended the funeral, Birda was in for a shocker. The deceased was actually a cousin. Imagine passing by a person every day and not knowing you’re related. Eerie.
When we told our supervisor about the discovery, she said, “Keep it down, I’m not supposed to have relatives working in the same department.”
That cracked both of us up. After all, we hadn’t been kin until a day earlier.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone from some of my cousins after church service this morning.

Pat is the multi-published author of more than thirty Christian titles, and is a three-time recipient of the Emma Rodgers Award for Best Inspirational Romance. She has been a featured speaker and workshop presenter at various venues across the country.

As a self-proclaimed genealogy sleuth, Pat is passionate about researching her ancestors and then casting them in starring roles in her novels. She describes the evidence of the gift of the Holy Ghost as an amazing, unforgettable, life-altering experience. God is the Author who advances the stories she writes.
Pat currently oversees the media publicity for the annual RT Booklovers Conventions. She has a B.S. in mass communications from Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts.
Pat converted her sofa-strapped, sports fanatic husband into an amateur travel agent, untrained bodyguard, GPS-guided chauffeur, and administrative assistant who is constantly on probation. They have a son and a daughter. 

Her newest release is Love Led By the Spirit. Minister Rossi Tolliver is ready to settle down. Besides the outward attraction, he desires a woman who is sweet, humble, and loves church folks. Sounds simple enough on paper, but when he gets off his knees, praying for that special someone to come into his life, God opens his eyes to the woman who has been there all along. There’s a slight problem. Jesetta “Jet” Hutchens lives by her own set of rules. Love is the farthest thing from her mind. But Rossi, the man and the minister, is hard to resist. Is Jet ready to allow the Holy Spirit to lead her to love?

Read more about Pat and her books by visiting or on social media.


  1. I'm interested in genealogy, too, only it's my daughter who's done the family research. However, I did find a distance cousin in France on Facebook. We virtually laughed as he and I share the same first and middle names ~ Jean Marie.

  2. Genealogy is a huge interest of mine too. It's so exciting to find cousins you never knew you had and to find a connection to places you never knew you were connected to.

  3. So interesting, Pat. Thanks for sharing!