I was born in a small apartment, alone with my biological mother in Prince Rupert, BC. I was hidden and concealed from anyone in an effort to keep my birth (and conception) a secret. Shortly thereafter, I was physically abandoned on a doorstep. My biological father slept on the other side of town, unaware that his girlfriend was directing his only child's life, and stealing me away from him as she fed him lies and stories. I was placed in an orphanage, where I was drugged and neglected. Months later, I was with my forever, adoptive family, the Keall's. I did not know any of this until I was 39 years old.
I also had no idea who my biological family was. As I was abandoned, I had no records. All I had was "unknown" written on my court order. I was always curious about why I was abandoned and had insight at a young age to realize that it impacted me on many levels. This insight proved helpful as I entered into therapy at 15 years old, and I've continued a life long curiosity for knowledge, understanding and healing.
Even though I had no records, I began my search at 18 years old. I had no assistance, no where to turn. I tried it all. I put my story on the covers of Newspapers, Magazines and spoke my truth on Radio and Television. I travelled many times to Prince Rupert and stapled posters on grocery store bulletin boards and telephone poles. None of it surfaced answers. Even the police didn't want to help. I was told that they weren't in the business of match making. Ironic, considering this is a criminal offence.
My biological mother didn't want to be found. She would never admit to anyone what she had done.
I categorized my search like a hobby. I had life to live that had some normalcy and decided to live to my fullest potential. I worked hard and created a successful career for myself in the High Net Worth sector. I also raised my family that includes my long-term partner, two wonderful boys and two pugs. For more than twenty years, I searched within traditional mediums. I searched through microfiche, hung posters all over Prince Rupert and travelled back and forth every few years in an effort to find one more clue. I did find another abandoned baby before me as this baby's ex-husband called my tips line in response to a recent newspaper story. Turns, out this would be baby #1 from my biological mother, a half-sibling, abandoned. This was confirmed by a private DNA test that I initiated and organized.
In our very small world, baby #1 is related through their adoption to close family friends that lived across the street from my childhood home. However, the family friends were hesitant to connect me to baby #1 for reasons I will expand later. In the early 2000's, the Prince Rupert Newspaper published a news story titled "Keall quest spurs another search for lost parents" for baby #1 16 days after I had recently published another news story. I asked the Editor for the contact information for Baby #1 and I was denied. Instead, the Editor sent my contact information to Baby #1. Shortly thereafter we were speaking and on our call, I suggested we could be possibly related. Sadly, baby #1 responded quickly with defence and told me that idea was crazy.
As I continued spreading word of my story through the media, I also found baby #3 from my biological mother, another half-sibling that was also abandoned in Prince Rupert. This was confirmed by a private DNA test that I initiated and organized.
I had processed a 23andme kit in 2014. I waited. In early 2016, I processed Ancestry and FamilyTree kits. Finally, in the summer of 2016, it all changed. A high percentage match would eventually reveal who my biological mother was. However, this wasn't easy. While this person was accessible and responded to me quickly, she was also adopted. She asked me to find her biological mother as well. And, I did. I found her mother on the same day I read that my biological mother had passed away just a few months beforehand. After searching for days, I would find the one child my biological mother kept and raised because her husband found out she was pregnant. I initiated a private DNA test and it was confirmed that this person was my half-sibling - I found our biological mother.
My biological mother passed away just months before I found her. She knew that I was finding all the babies she abandoned. She had a sudden heart attack. She did not want to live for the day when she had to face all the crimes she committed.
As I had decades of experience with traditional records, I turned to different databases and searched my biological mother's last name. I was incredibly eager to learn more about who she was. Clearly, no one around her knew her with such secrets and betrayals in front of their eyes. I found a death certificate for another baby that she delivered. However, this time it was different. This baby was abandoned in the hospital (later died alone at Hospice). I had another microfiche search done, and it brought up another half-sibling abandoned baby (later died). Including myself, I have found 5 abandoned babies, born and physically abandoned by the same mother. I am still searching for a 6th possible abandoned baby.
This is the largest serial abandonment case known.
Finding my biological mother deceased didn't just end there. I was always keenly aware that my biological father was out there. I always had deep intuition that he didn't know of my existence. Turns out, I was right. Through traditional search mediums, I found him. A private legal paternity test confirmed our relationship. I am his only child. We are in a deep and meaningful relationship as we make up for lost time. Our loving reunion also encompasses his wonderful and supportive wife, as well as my adoptive parents. This beautiful outcome was something that I never anticipated or dreamed of. My biological father and his wife have moved nearby, only two blocks away.
With such a shocking case, I've had some of the most difficult and painful conversations of my life. I met many people who didn't want to believe this to be true, to others who were not prepared with the facts I uncovered.
There are many pieces to this story that I would like to believe I am not part of. Can you blame me? Who would want to be in this story? Yet, I have learned the lesson decades ago that supported my well-being throughout this process.
The lesson was, this isn't personal. Although, that is the hardest piece to reconcile when there is no other relationship closer than a child and their mother. My biological mother impacted dozens of lives and did so because she was taught these values, survival mechanisms and had a dysfunctional, ill family that could not support her mental health. I didn't deserve this, neither did the other abandoned babies. Today, it's what I do with it that counts, and I've chosen to continue to do my personal work, rise above the fray, know my worth and live a happy, fulfilled life. I do this for myself but also for my two children.