Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Good Story is Right at Your Fingertips

Born in one city, raised at opposite ends of the country and united through a chance encounter via technology – the tale of two sisters. Sounds like a novel, right?
Well, it certainly could be. But in this case…it happened to me.
Okay, so the fiction part would be that I didn’t find out that I have a long lost sister or anything, but I definitely have found one of my doppelgängers in the world – and she just so happens to be a history-making U.S. Olympian.
Her name is Erin Hamlin from upstate New York and we’re only a few months apart in age. She recently won a bronze medal in the women’s single luge competition of the Olympics in Sochi and it’s the first medal ever won by a U.S. male or female in the single luge event.
Someone came into my work office last week and said she had seen my twin on television. I laughed and passed it off as a joke until I watched the interview myself via the Internet. And it was startling how much our profiles resemble each other.
Let’s just say I had more than one person doing a double take when they spotted the side-by-side shots of Erin and I on social media (see below). It had its own little small-scale viral moment. Here’s the picture. What do you think?
My Olympic doppelganger :)
Recently in the news though, there happened to be a real case of two long-lost sisters raised on two different continents connecting through YouTube.
Anais Bordier, a 25-year-old fashion designer from France, spotted something quite fascinating in a YouTube video – a Los Angeles woman named Samantha Futerman who looked just like her. Bordier, who lives in London, couldn’t believe her eyes, especially when she found the woman on social media and discovered they had the same birthday.
Futerman was quite surprised – to say the least – at Bordier’s message and both were further surprised to learn they were both adopted and were born in Busan, South Korea. The women chatted via Skype in English, although Bordier’s native language is French.
In an interview with “Good Morning America,” Futerman said that looking into Bordier’s face and seeing a mirror of her own features was weird, yet she felt a strange calm and comfort as well. When they met for the first time in London, Bordier poked Futerman’s head to make sure she was real. They met up in Los Angeles and Manhattan and found out through a DNA test what they knew all along – they were twins separated at birth when they were placed in different adoption agencies.
Bordier told the interviewer that she had always felt as though something was missing in her life. Futerman has two adoptive brothers, but Bordier is an only child. The sisters have now decided to make a documentary about their experience, and they say they’ve already heard from many other adoptees who are thankful to them.
Futerman went on in an interview to describe her feelings of finding her sister, like “that feeling on Christmas when you open up the presents, the one you were asking for, it’s that—that pure feeling of joy...that’s how I always feel.”
True tales like this just go to show us that there are incredible stories all around us, whether we’re writing non-fiction or fiction, to inspire us for our own story lines and ideas. We just have to be on the lookout to find them.
Have you discovered your doppelgänger somewhere? Or have you actually been united with a long-lost relative? I’d love to hear about your experience.

Morgan Tarpley is an award-winning newspaper reporter and photographer in Louisiana. She is also a historical novelist currently seeking representation. Besides writing and traveling to over a dozen countries, her interests include acting in her local theater, photography, historical re-enactment and singing.

For more information about Morgan, visit her website ( and blog ( You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Goodreads.


  1. That's a fascinating story, Morgan. I have written a historical about this very situation. And eventually my twins discover each other. It's set in mid Victorian times.

  2. Hi Morgan,
    Wow, you are doppelgangers for sure! That's an amazing likeness. I love stories about separated siblings finding each other too.

    1. I know, Paula! It's uncanny the resemblance and we're the same age too. :) I think I have another novel idea brewing in my mind now.

  3. What an amazing post - on all fronts! Thank you for sharing.

  4. Morgan, the resemblance in the pics is striking. You're definitely doppelgangers :) It's interesting how technology can reunite long lost family.

    1. Yes, Narelle, and it kind of shocked me how much we looked alike. :) It's cool looking like an Olympian though!

      Technology has many pros and cons - but finding people in this case for the sisters was a great thing! and for me finding my doppelganger too! lol