A retired professor from Cape Breton says he thought local researchers were “pulling his leg” when they told him he is a blood relative of U.S. presidential hopeful Donald Trump.

Correction: CTV News has learned that this was an April Fool’s Day prank. We regret the error.


History students from Cape Breton University discovered that Greg MacLeod -- a retired business professor -- is distant cousins with the reality TV star- and businessman-turned-politician.

“I couldn’t believe it,” MacLeod said.

MacLeod is a member of the MacLeod Clan from Tong, Scotland, in the Hebrides islands. So was Trump’s mother, Mary MacLeod, who emigrated to New York after meeting Donald Trump’s father, Fred Trump, in the 1930s.

MacLeod said he and Trump are third cousins, three times removed.

The professor, who devoted his career to “alternative business structures based on humanistic principles,” said Trump doesn’t display typical MacLeod characteristics.

The clan members are “known for being open and democratic and accepting of people of all races and religions,” he said. During his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, Trump has become known for wanting to take a hardline against Muslims and has been accused of making racist remarks about Mexicans.

It’s not the only connection between Trump and the Nova Scotia island. Last month, a website called “Cape Breton If Donald Trump Wins” garnered international attention for encouraging Americans fleeing a Trump presidency to consider settling there.

With a report from CTV Atlantic’s Ryan MacDonald