Adopted at just six months old, Sam Landis has no recollection of his birth parents, but the familial resemblance and bond proved strong when he met his biological father for the the first time at the Orlando International Airport earlier this month. The 43-year-old documented the emotional experience on video, and his nerves were palpable as he awaited the reunion.
“You don’t know whether you go in for the handshake or the hug, you know,” Landis said while making his way through the terminal. “I’m a hugger, you know, so I’m thinking I’m going in for the hug.”
A hug did in fact prove to be the right call, as Landis and his 63-year-old father, Greg Baker, shared a long embrace in the middle of the airport. For Baker, this was a miraculous opportunity to meet his only son.
“It’s a magical moment,” he told WLWT-TV. “I am just honored that he would want to have a relationship with me.”
Landis said he had long wondered about his birth parents and, through a DNA kit was able to track down his biological father. He has subsequently also met his paternal grandmother and a step sister who lives in Indianapolis.
As it turns out, the meeting in the airport was just the start of what is shaping up to be a beautiful new relationship. Landis shared that it had long been a dream of his to go fishing with his dad, and, since their first encounter, the two did just that.
“It was number one on my bucket list: go siding with my father,” Landis said. “Believe it or not, we caught our very first fish at the same time.”
Baker, meanwhile, is equally thrilled to be reunited with his son and is grateful for the time they have shared with one another.
“We really did bond out there on that boat that day,” he said. “And it was amazing.”
As WLWT-TV reported, Landis and Baker hope their experience inspires other families to “never give up hope” and “to keep searching for your loved ones.”
“It’s almost like he’s been there forever,” Landis concluded. “I call him dad. He calls me son. It feels natural.”
Watch the sweet reunion HERE.