I began posting to genealogy message boards hoping to connect with
others that may be doing research. In Aug
of 2000, I received an e-mail from a person I did not know, Judy Neilson
“Hello ~ I am also
interested in the same surname I see you are in Rootsweb: "Sacauskis"... I am looking for information on Josephine
Sacauskis who once lived on 4137 S. Artesian Ave., Chicago 32, Illinois,
Can you help me?
Josephine was my grandmother and they had lived at the given
address. I sent her an e-mail telling her
Josephine was my Grandmother. She
responded with the following e-mail:
“Mike ~ sit down for this one. This is one of those great genealogical
stories that gives you chills when you hear about all the
strange turns of events.
My grandmother was a GERULIS. In May, a friend in North Carolina (another
GERULIS) and I decided to work together and put up a web site with all the data
I've collected over the years on any and all GERULIS's.
It's just barely getting started but will be invaluable
for researching. Along the way I
contacted an Eduardo Gerulis who lives in Brazil. After some time I consolidated the facts of
our correspondence into a Genealogical Profile which I sent him just last night
for him to check over.
Meanwhile, to help him, I also did some super snooping on
the web hoping to find a family connection.
Looks like Eduardo is your second cousin and he will be
delighted to hear from you...and I'd also like to help you research your
grandmother's surname, GERULIS. Do you know her mother and father's name? We just have her father was
His English is limited but very understandable - I have
some pictures he's sent but they are at home on my computer. Tonight I will send you the profile and his
email address...(I am also at work) ~
This is a really nice family!
It was interesting but a little strange because I knew that my
grandmother’s surname was Balcius. But I
was curious, so I told Judy to give Eduardo my e-mail address. She also gave me Eduardo’s and I emailed him.
In the mean time, I spoke with my mom and asked her if she
remembered anyone named Gerulis and she thought she had a vague recollection of
the name but wasn’t sure. She also
mentioned that they had saved family documents and that when I visited next we
could look over them to see if there was anything of use. I also called my Aunt Annie and she seemed also
to recall the name as well but didn’t recall what the relationship was.
After a couple of weeks I got an e-mail from Eduardo. He told me his grandfather was Vladas Gerulis
and he was my grandmother’s brother. He
also told me he had a picture of my Dad in a “toga”. Well this disclosure kind of piqued my
interest. My Dad was a reserved person.
So it was either a case of mistaken Identity or perhaps I was on to some family
secret here. Like some wild and crazy
frat boy past my dad never revealed.
Eduardo said he would scan in the picture, which he did and
included it in the next e-mail he sent me. Well I opened it expecting to see something
out of the movie Animal House and what appeared on the screen was indeed a
picture of my dad, but not in a toga cut from bed sheets, but in a graduation
cap and gown! So there was some type of
relationship between the two families. I
just wasn’t sure what it was.