NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — They look alike, sound alike, and even have the same tattoo. But even with those stark similarities, adoption paperwork said it was impossible they could be sisters until a DNA test nine years later proved otherwise.
It started in 2013. Cassandra Madison and Julia Tinetti were working at the Russian Lady in New Haven. Cassandra walked swiftly past Julia who noticed her Dominican Republic tattoo on her left arm. Julia has the same one on her back.
“I was like ‘hey are you from the Dominican Republic?’ and she like speeds past me and she’s like ‘yeah but I’m adopted.’ And I’m like ‘wait so am I!’,” Tinetti said. It was an instant connection.
“There was no like ‘she’s alright’, like we hit it off and it was like dadadada like it was non stop.,” Madison said.
They bonded over being adopted and raised by single mothers in the United States. And even though other people told them they looked alike, errors on Julia’s adoption paperwork said it wasn’t possible.
“We started twinning, we wore the same clothes, we actually bought shirts one day that said ‘I’m the big sister/I’m the little sister.'” Tinetti said in video posted to TikTok.
An eager Madison wouldn’t let it go. She finally asked her biological father about giving up another child. He admitted he gave up a little girl.
“He was like ‘I’m just so sorry it was just a hard time for your mom and I and I just don’t like to think about it.’,” Madison said. “That day, I came home and my husband was like ‘babe how was work?’ And I’m like ‘I’m going to Connecticut tomorrow’ and he’s like ‘what!?’”
A long car ride and a DNA tube later that’s all it took. Two weeks later the girls shared the news on TikTok.
To think, for nine years these women had a lot more in common than looks and a tattoo. These sisters definitely not strangers.
When Madison started the search for her birth family two years ago, she and Tinetti found out they had seven other siblings. Out of nine children, Julia and Madison were the only two adopted.