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Two Men, 41, Devastated to Discover They Were Switched at Birth and Raised by the Wrong Families

Bettina Dizon
Nov 14, 2021
11:40 P.M.

David Tait Jr. and Leon Swanson have been friends for years, but it was only when they were 41 that they learned the truth -- they were switched at birth.

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Being switched at birth is a plot one would only see in movies, but for David Tait Jr. and Leon Swanson, it was a reality that they had to face.

Tait and Swanson have been friends for years, raised in Manitoba, Canada. Throughout their lives, people noticed similarities both shared with each other’s parents.

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched-at-birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched-at-birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

Being born at Norway House Indian Hospital only three days apart in 1975, they entertained the probability of being switched at birth.

In 2016, after long-standing suspicions, DNA tests confirmed the disturbing truth -- each other’s biological parents raised them. They were both 41 years old at the time.

When former Manitoba Legislative Assembly for Keewatinook member Eric Robinson announced the switch, Swanson and Tait could not help but burst into tears.

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Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched-at-birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched-at-birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

“What happened here is lives were stolen,” Robinson told the press. “You can’t describe it as anything less than that.”

According to Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott, an investigation would take place to unravel what had happened 40 years ago.

According to Charlotte Mason, Tait’s biological mother, she was transported to a hospital in Winnipeg shortly after giving birth due to medical complications.

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched-at-birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched-at-birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

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Three days later, Francis Tate, Swanson’s biological mother, gave birth to her son. Unfortunately, the two ended up with each other’s mom. Robinson added:

“I can’t describe this matter as anything less than criminal. We can live with one mistake, but two mistakes of a similar nature is not acceptable [...].”

It turned out that Tate and Swanson were not the only children switched at birth at Norway House hospital. Luke Monias and Norman Barkman, born five months after Tate and Swanson, also ended up with the wrong family.

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched at birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

Leon Swanson and David Tait Jr. during a press conference about their switched at birth incident. | Source: youtube.com/CBCNews

According to Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott, an investigation would take place to unravel what had happened 40 years ago.

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Philpott claimed to be “deeply troubled to learn of this second case.” As such, health ministry members offered to help counsel the families who had to endure such pain.

A similar case previously happened to two Sicilian women, Caterina Alagna and Melissa Fodera, who were swapped in the hospital due to an error.

Luckily, the mistake was discovered three years later, and everything was settled. The switch happened while nurses were celebrating New Year at the hospital.

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