A picture of Teanna Elliot with her daughter (Photo courtesy of Teanna Elliot)

Kelowna’s ‘Baby Mary’ finds biological parents after more than 30 years

Geneologist and DNA test helped her connect with her biological parents

A Kelowna resident known as “Baby Mary” has finally discovered who her birth parents are after more than thirty years.

Back in 1987, Elliot was just a baby when two teenagers found her in a green garbage bag tucked away in the corner of a Calgary shopping centre. Still covered in blood and attached to her umbilical cord, Elliot’s story garnered national media attention and she was quickly given the nickname “Baby Mary.”

After receiving treatment as a baby, Elliot was adopted by a loving family who soon moved to Kelowna for work.

While Elliot’s parents were always open about her adoption, she was determined to one day find her biological parents – a quest that would take her two decades to complete.

“I was about 12 and I started to ask my mom questions about a photo of me in a baby book,” said Elliot, who is now 32 years old.

“At that point, she couldn’t hide much about it anymore.”

READ MORE: B.C. couple bring son home from Nigeria after long adoption delay

Despite previous searches for her birth parents, an Ancestry DNA test taken by Elliot turned out to be the breakthrough she was looking for.

Two years after taking the test, a friendly message from a distant family member on the site finally helped Elliot reconnect with her father.

“I got a message on the site from someone who said we share grandparents and I thought, this is huge,” said Elliot.

After Elliot’s cousin helped lead her to her biological dad in Calgary, the two flew to Kelowna to meet Elliot last May for the first time.

“We had a few meetings together and it was emotional and surreal. To look at these two people, I found traits from both my aunt and dad that I had.”

“The conversation flew naturally. You basically have thirty years to catch up with someone for the first time.”

Elliot also found her mom with the help of a genealogist shortly after. While Elliot still hasn’t met her biological mom yet, she said she’s glad to just be talking with one another.

“It still a working relationship with my mom. We’re asking very surface level things when messaging each other right now,” said Elliot

“It could be two years before I meet her. I’m honestly just letting her process everything right now.”

Elliot said there’s been two big reasons for her to find her biological parents.

“One inspiration was my adopted parents. They’ve been nothing but supportive,” said Elliot.

“Another reason was because of my daughter. I want to make sure her life is perfect. If there are any health issues in our family, I want her to know that.”

According to the Adoption Council of Canada, there are around 30,000 children and youth in government care who are looking for permanent families.

READ MORE: Kelowna woman embarks on search for birth mother


@connortrembley
connor.trembley@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: Masset Dance Troupe presents beachfront ‘promenade performance’

Troupe performed ‘A Mid Summer Day’s Dream’ for family, friends on July 4 and 5

UPDATE: Masset anti-racism rally postponed

The Yahk’ii event, which means ‘truth’ in Haida, will be rescheduled at a later date

Haida matriarchs occupy ancient villages as fishing lodges reopen to visitors

‘Daughters of the rivers’ say occupation follows two fishing lodges reopening without Haida consent

Registration open for first-annual ‘NextIslandpreneur’ student business competition

Competition offers mentors, iPads, seed money, cash prizes to young entrepreneurs on Haida Gwaii

Haida Nation reminds ‘select few’ fishing lodges that Haida Gwaii is closed to non-essential travel

‘Upholding Haida law amid COVID-19’ release comes one day before Queen Charlotte Lodge plans to reopen

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

BREAKING: Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Northern B.C. First Nations call for reversal of grizzly bear hunting ban

Growing grizzly populations have led to fewer ungulates and increased fear of attacks says Chad Day

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

Most Read