Bulldogs of Butler: Long lost cousins

Photo from Aaron Smith’s Instagram account.

NATALIE KINNEY | STAFF REPORTER | nkinney@butler.edu

Butler University provided the opportunity for long-lost cousins to meet for the first time. The cousins recall how they came to meet each other and how they’ve been inseparable ever since.

From: Indianapolis (20 minutes apart)

Aaliyah: First-Year

Aaron: Senior

The Butler Collegian: How do you two know each other?

Aaliyah Coe: My great-grandma, Margaret, is his grandma.

Aaron Smith: I think she’s my great-aunt because she’s my dad’s aunt.

AC: My mom’s grandma. That would make her my great-grandma because Margaret has a daughter. Do you know her daughter? You probably do.

AS:[Our family is] too big. We just met a month ago. My dad said, “Your cousin’s supposed to go to Butler.” And I asked if we’d met. I didn’t think so. The meeting was funny. I was going to come meet her on campus in the morning and I didn’t get to see her before class and all my friends said they got to meet my cousin.

AC: I was so upset. I walked into the Diversity Center and they were really welcoming and I said I was supposed to meet my cousin down here. And everyone said, “I love Aaron; Aaron is so cool.” I’m just like, “OK, everyone here likes my cousin and I don’t even know who he is yet.”

TBC: Where are you both from?

AS: Indianapolis.

AC: Here. Just a drive away [from each other].

TBC: Did you ever know of each other?

AS: It was literally my dad telling me [about Aaliyah].

They look at each other and laugh.

AC: Did you go to that family barbeque?

They both laugh

AS: I didn’t go.

AC: I didn’t either; I was wondering if you were going to be there!

TBC: When did you find out you two were cousins?

AC: The first week. Ever since then, my mom told me she thought I had a cousin going to Butler. The first week of school she asked if I met my cousin and I didn’t know. Is my cousin a boy? Is my cousin a girl? What’s my cousin’s name? And then I’m like, “I’m not going to find Aaron Smith on this campus.” And then she gave me his number and I texted [him],  “Are you Margaret’s grandson?” He didn’t respond. So, then I texted, “Oh, by the way I’m your cousin.”

AS: Legit had no pictures, no names-

AC: Nothing!

TBC: Can you describe what it was like meeting for the first time?

AC: It was cool; we clicked automatically over the little things like Chick-Fil-A Polynesian sauce.

AS: We walked in and saw each other and-

They looked at each other at this point and both laugh.

AS/AC: “Yeaaaaah.”

TBC: What’s the best part of discovering you’re long lost cousins?

AS: You have somebody you haven’t known, but you know you have this bond [for the rest of your life].