America’s most inbred family finally get haircuts – and they’re transformed

America's most inbred family have finally got fresh trims and look totally transformed.

The Whittaker clan skyrocketed to fame after their complicated family tree was exposed in a YouTube documentary in 2004.

Their story began when twin brothers Henry and John allowed their children to marry each other and have 15 children together in the early 1900s, although most of the brood didn't survive their earlier years.

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Fast forward to today and siblings Ray, Betty, Larry Lorene and Lorene's son Timmy, all live together in a dilapidated house in the West Virginia town of Odd.

All five suffer from apparent physical and mental issues, probably as a result of their genetics – but it is thought Ray is the most severely affected, speaking only in grunts and non-verbal exclamations.

Nearly 20 years after he first visited the family, filmmaker Mark Laita, who runs the channel Soft White Underbelly, has returned to the Whittakers' home for a haircut.

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Betty and Lorene, meanwhile, had their hair washed and styled by the helpful hairdressers.

The siblings and Timmy could all be seen grinning after getting their new hair dos, which saw Ray shave off his iconic beard in favour of an eye-catching moustache.

As the four climbed back into the car, Laita said: "Look at you guys. You guys all look great."

Fans were quick to heap on the praise after seeing the family's transformation.

One wrote: "Wow I love how Ray sat in awe watching Betty get her hair done. They all look great. It's great that there's still some decent humans in the world like Mark. This is not exploitation this is human kindness at its best."

Meanwhile another chimed in: "Ray was so happy watching Betty get her hair done. He seemed really pleased for her…there's such a pure innocent beauty in this family."

And a third added: "I love how every time you visit them, their home looks better. You can tell that their lives have been improved, thanks to you meeting them."

The siblings are the descendants of two sets of first cousins, the children of identical twins, who got married and had children.

Twins John and Henry Whittaker were born in 1897.

John married his own first cousin Ada Riggs and the pair had nine children together, including Gracie Irene Whittaker who was born in 1920.

John's brother Henry married Sally Burton and the couple had seven children, including John Emory Whittaker, born in 1913.

Cousins Gracie and John then married in November 1935 before giving birth to their 15-strong brood.

Experts believe the inter-family relations leading to the 15 siblings' births may have caused some of the mental and physical conditions they now suffer from.

Two of them didn't make it past childhood and many family members have also had heart attacks.

And while the family is fairly isolated, Betty, Lorene, Larry and Ray's cousin, Jason, still visit.

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"It's unusual but they're just like everybody else," he told Laita in another video.

"They'll give the shirt off their back for you."


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