Mother Discovers Son After 45 Years, Learns That He Died 25 Years Ago

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By Sounak Mukhopadhyay | December 18, 2013 2:38 PM EST

Oregon woman Carol King-Eckersley discovered that her son was dead. Heartbreaking indeed, but the more striking part of the news here is that her son was killed 25 years back, and she came to know about it in the early part of 2013.

Kenneth Bissett, Ms King-Eckersley's son, was among the 270 people who were killed during the explosion of Pan Am Flight 103 over Scotland. BBC captured Ms King-Eckersley in a documentary where she said that she came to know about her son's death only in April 2013. He was the 'only child' she ever had, she said. She calls it a 'double tragedy' as she 'found' him and 'lost' him on the same day, she said.

Mr Bissett was coming home from the overseas programme under the Syracuse University in London. Ms King-Eckersley gave up her son 45 years ago when she was 19. She did so to protect the reputation of her father who was a high school principal, USA Today reports. She had the child when she was still unmarried. She gave him up in 1967 with a promise that she would never interfere in his life.

She only knew the name of her son. She wanted to know more after her husband's death in 2012. She searched for her son on the Internet but she was directed to a memorial page dedicated to those who had been killed in the flight explosion on Dec 21, 1988 - just a couple of days after his birthday. The Syracuse University lost 35 students in the accident and Mr Bissett was one of them. Ms King-Eckersley said that it was beyond her imagination to realise how painful it had been for his adoptive parents who have also passed away.

Ms King-Eckersley said that she had never seen her son, except in the hospital where she gave birth to him. The last vivid picture she has in her mind is a baby wrapped in a yellow blanket. Thereafter, the attorney took the baby to its new parents. Mr Bissett turned out to be a 'Christmas present' for his adoptive parents who described him in such words on the memorial page. They also wrote that Mr Bissett, like fine wine, improved as he grew older.

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