You often hear of the power of social media and how amazing it can be, but you don’t realise until it happens to you or someone in your own community.
What are the odds of finding your biological sister? Well, Karen Kennedy knows all about that.
Karen was born in Lithgow in 1958 and adopted by Pat and John Marshall.
“I was adopted around the age of four months, I was left by my birth mother at a house in Blackheath as she was moving on and I guess I wasn’t included in that life,” she said.
Karen said she had a good life raised in Katoomba with her loving parents.
“Pat and Marshall are two wonderful people, but it had taken me 60 years to finally come to terms that I needed some closure of who I was,” Karen said.
She said she had been very angry and hurt that she was adopted.
“Was I normal? I thought, as I was bullied during my school life and did not fit in.”
Karen now lives in Nowra and said this year was a turning point and she had always known there were other children prior to herself.
“In April this year I applied to NSW Family and Community Services to get my birth information and medical history.
“[It was] a long process, but in October I received a call from my case worker who informed me that I had an older sister who was adopted in 1956,” she said.
To Karen’s amazement her sister was also adopted by a family in Lithgow by the name of Moore.
“Her name was Patricia Robyn, I had a name and a date of birth,” she said.
In the hope to find her sister, Karen took to Facebook.
Karen lived in Lithgow in the late 1970s and through her ex-husband she was informed of the Facebook page ‘Back to Lithgow Reunion’.
“I drafted my post for people to please help me find her, I hoped that somebody may of known her and her family, but it was so many years ago,” she said.
Remarkably within minutes social media users responded with bits of information and it turned out that some did know Patricia.
“To my amazement a gentleman responded that he knew her, my heart skipped a beat for sure and this gentleman was kind enough to pass on my information to my sister,” she said.
Within 24 hours Karen and Patricia made contact through the power of social media.
“I now have contact with my biological sister Tricia who didn’t know I existed either,” she said.
She also said she couldn’t believe how many lovely Lithgow residents responded to her Facebook page.
“There was around 100 who gave me information as well as their well wishes, so a very big thank you to all of you, especially the gentleman who passed on my information. I will never forget what you did,” she said.
Karen said not knowing she had a sister was the void in her life.
“Having a blood relative gives me a sense of being connected, there was always a part missing. I knew there was siblings out there, Tricia never knew I existed though, so I may search for the rest there is another five,” she said.
She also said finding her sister was wonderful and they planned to meet up.
“We have spoken a few times now, she lives in South Australia but we will certainly arrange a get together in the near future,” she said.
On Karen’s Facebook post her sister Patricia Excell stated in a comment that she had connected with her baby sister.
“How awesome, I am still trying to get my head around it. Best news ever! Thank you for all your posts getting my attention Lithgow,” she said.
While you're with us, you can now receive updates straight to your inbox from the Lithgow Mercury. To make sure you're up to date with all the news, sign up here.