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

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Most Read