Search leads to siblings meeting for first time

SIBLINGS UNITED: Siblings Anna Wright and John Pollard met for the first time when the pair were in their 60s.
SIBLINGS UNITED: Siblings Anna Wright and John Pollard met for the first time when the pair were in their 60s. Contributed

FOR Murgon's John Pollard, replying to a letter asking him to confirm his mother's details changed his life.

"I got a letter from the Salvation Army asking was I the son of Eileen Frances White," Mr Pollard said.

"I rang them and they said this woman was looking for me, who they believed to be my sister."

So together John, his brother Brian and newly found sister Anna Wright (formerly White) started to piece the puzzle together.

"When I was 20 I was told by my father I was adopted," Ms Wright said.

"He told me my mother's name and that was pretty much all he told me.

"I got her death certificate in the 1990s when the Freedom of Information Act came in.

"I wrote to the Australian government and asked if they could find my brothers in the early 2000s, which they said they couldn't and referred me to the Salvation Army," she said.

"When I wrote to them, all I really wanted was a photo of my mother and I got so much more."

Soon Anna, who now lives in England, was on her way back to her homeland to meet her brothers for the first time.

Tragically, just weeks after meeting for the first time Brian suffered a fatal heart attack.

But that initial meeting in October 2011 united a family.

"Sometimes these things are a disaster, but it just hasn't been at all," Ms Wright said.

"I was just so lucky to find this lot, just so lucky."

Together Anna and John have pieced together what they believe to be the story behind Anna's adoption - a story their mother never told, not even to her best friends.

The pregnant, unmarried, 24-year-old Dirranbandi Hospital domestic, Eileen White, was sent by her mother to live in a boarding house in Brisbane. While Eileen was pregnant Stan Pollard, John and Brian's father and Eileen's soul mate, who she eventually wed, returned from war and travelled to Brisbane to ask for her hand in marriage, saying he would take on the child which was not his.

Eileen declined this offer, which John and Anna presumed was because she had already made arrangements with Anna's father - the man who Anna long believed to be her adopted father.

The trainee pharmacist at the Goondiwindi Hospital moved to Brisbane because "he got some girl in trouble", which Anna and John believe refers to their mother's pregnancy.

"What we are thinking is that he would have been going to the hospital and that is how they met," Ms Wright said.

"Presumably my biological father arranged for he and his wife to adopt me."

"The question remains as to why he went to pick me up by himself from the hospital," Ms Wright said.

It is also coincidental a couple from Goondiwindi moved to Brisbane and adopted a child born to a woman from Dirranbandi.

Anna and John are relieved to have been united, but still have many questions which could always remain unanswered.

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