A man who spent years trying to prove he was the son of an aristocratic landowner finally got his DNA tested to prove that he was the heir to his father’s estate.
Jordan Adlard Rogers, a 31-year-old from Helston, Cornwall, was officially recognized through DNA testing that he was the illegitimate son and heir to the National Trust Penrose estate that his late father, Charles Rogers, owned, according to multiple reports.
The estate measures 1,536 acres and is estimated to be worth around £50 million.
This followed his father’s passing back in August 2018, when he was finally allowed to perform a DNA test to determine his genetic connection with the late owner of the estate, according to the Daily Mail.
The young Rogers has since moved into the estate, and in order to be well-versed in his new life, he’s been learning about his family history, according to Cornwall Live. He said that his eagerness to learn his family history comes from wanting to have an accurate understanding of who his father was as a person.
“Charles never actually lived in the estate,” Rogers said. “He lived in one of the estate’s farmhouses as his mum lived here so he never got the chance to inherit it. [Charles and his mother] died two weeks apart and [Charles’s] brother was also in line to live in the estate before him.”
However, when Charles’s brother passed away from cancer, the younger Rogers was the only other person to inherit the property, according to the Daily Mail.
Rogers told the news outlet that he’s been able to put together a semblance of his father’s life—his habits, lifestyle, and family expectations.
“It got to the point when [Charles] gave up on himself and was living in his car instead of his house as it was such a mess,” Rogers said.
He’s since learned about the factors that contributed to his father’s downward spiral into drug abuse and ultimately death from an overdose.
“There was always a pressure of him trying to match expectation,” Rogers said. “His brother was an RAF pilot and his dad a lieutenant commander in the Royal Navy so he had big shoes to fill. He was under huge pressure taking it on, but he was different and a free spirit.”
Along with high expectations contributing to his stress, Charles’s service in the army affected his life greatly, along with the passing of his brother, whom the 31-year-old said his father was very close to.
According to Cornwall Live, Rogers bore a striking resemblance to his father when his father was little.
Rogers always had a feeling that he was the son of the late landowner, but never really had a chance to verify that until now, according to the Daily Mail. Although Rogers was offered the chance to perform a DNA test back when he was much younger, it never worked out.
“[Charles] offered to do a DNA test when I was younger but it didn’t happen, and then when I was 18 I knocked on his door and asked if I could have the test, and he told me to do it through the solicitors,” Rogers recalled. “I was 18 so I had other priorities at the time.”
According to the news outlet, Rogers wrote many letters addressed to his father, but never received any response, nor any letters back. However, in 2016, Rogers said he got ahold of his father’s personal attorney Philip Care.
“Philip said Charles didn’t want to do the test so I wrote one final letter with a DNA test kit enclosed and that was when Philip rang and told me Charles was dead,” Rogers said. He was then informed that his father had passed away from an overdose on drugs.
There were some members of the family who were against him taking the test, but eventually he was finally able to prove that he was the son of the late Charles Rogers.
Care worker inherits 1,536-acre manor house after DNA test https://t.co/3dmwOKasSo
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) May 21, 2019
Prior to his inheritance, Rogers was a community support worker who was struggling to make ends meet. After inheriting the estate, he quit his job as he had more than enough to live off of with the proceeds of the estate. According to the news outlet, Rogers said it’s been a shock how much his life changed since the DNA test came back positive.
“I’m now starting to get my feet under the table here,” Rogers said. “People say I’m lucky but I would trade anything to be able to go back and for Charles to know I was his son. Maybe then he might have taken a different path.”
Rogers said that since he no longer needs to work, he wishes to set up charities to help the Porthleven and Helston communities.
“I’ve been at the point of worrying about the next bill and have had a tough start in life but now I’m here I want to help people,” Rogers said. “I’m not going to forget where I’ve come from.”