Adopted woman's brother had been coming to her workplace for 10 years

"They're the best people," woman said.

March 22, 2019, 4:15 AM

A Iowa woman who was adopted as a baby looked long and hard to find her biological family.

As it turns out, she didn't have to look very far.

Sue Rizzio works at Edgewood Animal Hospital in Cedar Rapids, Iowa -- where her half-brother, Steve Hausakins, and half-sister, Julie Bean, had been coming in with their dogs for 10 years.

Rizzio knew them as "Snickers and Jasmine's" dad and "Little Dude's" mom, not as the family she had been searching for.

"When I was old enough to search on my own, I tried to get the court files unsealed, but couldn't," Rizzio told "Good Morning America." "Then I contacted the lawyer who handled the adoption, but all the records were lost in a flood and he had no recollection."

She gave up for a while. But then her daughter gave her a 23andMe DNA kit. She elected to participate in the "DNA Relatives" feature, which allows customers to find and connect with genetic relatives. So had one of her half siblings.

Rizzio had uploaded a photo of herself to 23andMe, but Steve Hausakins had not. Because he saw her picture, he figured it out first. She said he and his wife, Connie, contacted her, saying, "We know you from Edgewood."

PHOTO: The family gets together for their first Thanksgiving.
The family gets together for their first Thanksgiving.
Sue Rizzio

With that, Rizzio realized she had known the couple for 10 years.

"They're the best people," she said. "Everyone loves Steve and Connie."

Rizzio and Steve Hausakins had been living about eight miles apart.

"It was especially great when they were looking for me, too," she said. "I was just on cloud nine; I never came back down from it. They wanted to know, I wanted to know. We've been together ever since."

In addition to Steve, Rizzio's half-sister Julie Bean (Little Dude's mom), is also a regular at Edgewood.

There are two more siblings, Joe Hausakins and Deb West. Now, the five spend holidays together. Steve and Sue have plans to take a cruise in 2020.

Steve Hausakins called the moment he made the connection "amazing."

"I knew there was a sibling out there somewhere and the day would come we would actually meet," he told "GMA."

He has his wife Connie to thank. A genealogy enthusiast, she was the one who encouraged him to take the 23andMe test.

"It was unbelievable," Hausakins said about finding Rizzio. He added, "I would have never guessed. But now I see, she loos like my mom."

Rizzio told "GMA" her siblings have been telling her all about their mother and catching her up on the years passed. "It feels like I'm almost all caught up."