Woman Just Learns Her Son Died on Pan Am 103
Search for child she gave up for adoption has heartbreaking end
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 16, 2013 3:34 AM CST
Updated Dec 16, 2013 7:00 AM CST
Part of the wreckage of the Boeing 747 that was Pan Am Flight 103, and which exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland, on Dec. 21, 1988, with the loss of 270 lives.   (AP Photo/Anna Gowthorpe-pa)

(Newser) – Heartbreak for an Oregon woman who gave up her son for adoption 45 years ago: She decided to track him down after her husband's death last year, only to learn that he was among hundreds of people killed when Pan Am Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988, a BBC documentary finds. "270 people died in that tragedy and one of those happened to be the only child I ever had. And I didn’t even know it until last April," Carol King-Eckersley says. "So it became a kind of double tragedy. I found him and I lost him on the same day."

Her son, Kenneth Bissett, had been on the way home from Syracuse University's overseas program in London. His adoptive parents both died years after the terrorist attack. "I'm just starting to get to know him," says the grieving birth mother, who gave up her son at 19 to protect the reputation of her father, a high school principal. "In a way I'm going backwards because the getting to know him makes it sharper, makes the regret deeper." But she found some solace in attending a remembrance event at Syracuse, which lost 35 students in the attack, and in meeting friends and classmates who could share memories of her son. "From everything I have heard and read, he was an absolutely brilliant young man with a marvelous sense of humor," she says. (Click to read about an adoption story with a happier ending.)

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Dec 16, 2013 11:17 PM CST
HAD ENOUGH, that is completly untrue. You obvioulsyhave been watching too much reality TV. I am 50 years old and found out i was adoppted when i was 26 and never looked for them for two reasons, they might not want me to show up and I didnt have any desire to. They put me up for adoption for a reason and no matter what the reason, I felt it shoud be respected, just as the parent should respect the childs life that they grew up in.. You know how I found out, the birth mother of my sister who was also adopted,showed up at her house one day and said, HI I am your mom.(even though there were papers saying she could not do that) It is not always the kids that go looking, it is the parents as in the story. Either way it is rude and disrespectful to show up someplace and announce yourself without asking the adoptive parents. You can screw up a family very eaily with that kind of action and to assume that it will be some happy reunion is not a good idea. You gave them up for a reason, they have "parents" now. Why do you think you should go back and upset that balance that has been built over years.(not this story because parents were dead) I searched for medical records of my parents so I would be able to accurately give my medical history, but never the people themselves. If anyone adopts children please get the parents medical histories so you know what they are prone to or so you can tell them at some point. I was a graduate of Syracuse University and while i do not know the student from the story I was freinds with several of the people who died on Flight 103, was a very sad time for everyone
Dec 16, 2013 3:48 PM CST
That's such an ignorant comment by "Had Enough". I'm a 34 year old adoptee. I've never done either thing to my adoptive parents, whom I consider my *parents*. I've always known I was adopted. It does not have to be a dysfunctional experience.
Had Enough
Dec 16, 2013 3:17 PM CST
My wife is barren as the day is long, but this is the main reason we decided against adoption of a child. No matter how much you love, care for and protect them the minute they find out they're adopted THEY WILL SEARCH THE FOUR CORNERS OF THE SODDING GLOBE, AND WILL NOT QUIT, UNTIL THEY FIND THEIR BIRTH PARENT(S). Not to mention the occasional piercing heartbreak of hearing "......you're not my REAL parents!"