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

Wind and waves were part of the reason why the Sail Canada High Performance Team selected HMCS Quadra as the winter training base for Tokyo 2021. Photo by Ken Dool
National sailing team prepares for Olympics at HMCS Quadra in Comox

HMCS Quadra is serving as the winter training base for the Canadian… Continue reading

Courtenay residents will have a substantial schedule change for curbside trash collection beginning in January 2021. (Ben Lypka/Black Press file)
Courtenay moving to a zone system for curbside trash collection

New system means collection days will change with every statutory holiday

A jubilant Ronna-Rae Leonard salutes the crowd at her victory party at the Avalanche Bar & Grill. (photo by Scott Stanfield)
UPDATE: Leonard declared early winner for Courtenay-Comox

NDP incumbent held similar margin of lead throughout the evening

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

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

NDP Leader John Horgan speaks with the owner of a barber shop while campaigning in Pitt Meadows, B.C., on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. Campaigning was restricted by the coronavirus pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s B.C. majority came with historically low voter turnout

Barely half of eligible voters cast ballots in snap election

Jordan Jay Ward, 20, is wanted Canada-wide for manslaughter. (Calgary police photo)
RCMP: Suspicious man seen in Parksville woods resembled manslaughter suspect

Hikers say he resembled Jordan Jay Ward, wanted Canada-wide

A police pursuit ended with an arrest in Williams Lake on Highway 97 Sunday afternoon. (Facebook video screenshot)
Video catches police pursuit that ends with man kicked, punched in Williams Lake

A video of the arrest is getting widely shared on social media

FILE – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets Premier John Horgan during a press conference at the BC Transit corporate office following an announcement about new investments to improve transit for citizens in the province while in Victoria on Thursday, July 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Trudeau congratulates Horgan on NDP’s election victory in British Columbia

Final count won’t be available for three weeks due to the record number of 525,000 ballots cast by mail

Comedic actor Seth Rogen, right, and business partner Evan Goldberg pose in this undated handout photo. When actor Seth Rogen was growing up and smoking cannabis in Vancouver, he recalls there was a constant cloud of shame around the substance that still lingers. Rogen is determined to change that. (Maarten de Boer ohoto)
Seth Rogen talks about fighting cannabis stigma, why pot should be as accepted as beer

‘I smoke weed all day and every day and have for 20 years’

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

Most Read