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Modern-day Amelia Earhart not related to famous aviator

Aug. 12, 2013 at 10:34 AM ET

Video: Although she shares a name and passion for flying, Amelia Rose Earhart confirms that she is not from the same family as her famed namesake. She’ll still try to re-create Earhart’s famous flight next year.

Sometimes when a story sounds too good to be true, it is. That apparently is the case with Amelia Rose Earhart, the TV traffic and weather reporter who assumed that her love of flying traced back to a distant relative: the Amelia Earhart who in 1937 attempted to fly around the world.

As the modern day Earhart geared up for her own flight around the world, she decided she would need to document what, if any, family connection she had to her famous namesake. She hired a team of researchers to look back into both family trees and, as it turns out, there is no genealogical connection.

A bit stunned by the news, Amelia Rose Earhart, a reporter for the NBC affiliate KUSA, realized she needed to share the news with the rest of the world.

“Discovering who I’m not has led me to fully and finally understand who I really am,” Earhart announced in a video for KUSA on Friday. “In the last 24 hours new information from a team of researchers that I hired shows that while I share a name and a passion for flying with the first Amelia Earhart we’re not from the same family. And while I am her namesake, nothing in life is ever really as simple as we want it to be.”

Up until then, Earhart had been touting her family relationship to the famous female aviator. In fact, earlier this month, Earhart appeared on TODAY and said, “[My parents] didn’t really name me Amelia Earhart because of our relation to her — it’s very distant.”

Earhart still plans to make her 100-hour round-the-world flight next summer, explaining her thinking in a posting on her Facebook page.

"While the news was a jolt, it DOES NOT change my commitment to the the flight or to the mission of The Fly With Amelia Foundation, which is to enable young girls to pursue their dreams of flight," she wrote.

"I am so thankful for all the encouragement and support I have received and I am really looking forward to sharing my recreation of Amelia's flight around the world with all of you."

Video: Amelia Rose Earhart, a descendent of the famous female flyer who shares her name, talks about the her new plan to fly around the world, finishing the pilot’s original flight plan.


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