Where's Gary? Woman looking for biological father in Calgary

The details are scant: his first name, his job and a connection to the Prairies.

But a California woman is hoping to track down the father she never got the chance to know.

See Full Article

Toni Rempel placed a newspaper ad this weekend on behalf of her half-sister Bonnie Eklund, 45, who has been hoping to reconnect with her father who doesn't even know she exists.

"You want to know what somebody looks like. You want to know if you have other siblings. You want to see somebody that may be from that side of the family, to see if there's some familiarity," Eklund told CTV Calgary.

In the summer of 1969, Eklund's mother, Vernette, had a love affair in Tisdale, Sask., with a pharmaceutical representative named Gary, who lived in Calgary.

Vernette Eklund was working as a nurse at the Regina General Hospital and met Gary at a nightclub at the Westward Inn in Regina.

"They had a love affair that lasted through the summer, and then ended," said Rempel, who lives in Kelowna, B.C.

Gary was not informed when Vernette Eklund became pregnant, and Bonnie was born in April 1970.

"It was the summer of '69 and there was all of that free love," Rempel told The Canadian Press.

Vernette Eklund, who is now 69, worked long shifts at the hospital. With no proper daycare, she gave up her daughter for adoption when she was two, and she was raised by her grandparents.

"They were everything to me," said Bonnie Eklund. "I had a wonderful upbringing."

Eklund -- who is working as a doctor in San Diego, Calif. -- spent decades wondering about his father and his life, but didn't have the nerve to track him down. However, she relented when Rempel offered to place the newspaper ad.

"She's told me over the years that she feels there's a part of her missing and she wishes she knew, but she doesn't really have the courage herself to go searching. I asked her if it was OK if I did," said Rempel.

"We're trying to figure out who he is and trying to establish a possible connection for Bonnie to meet her father."

Rempel said that Gary, who would've been in his 20s at the time, would fly into Regina for his job. She said that he was about six feet tall, slender and had blond hair.

"His last name ends with something 'Ski,'" she added. "He may be of Polish (or) Ukrainian descent."

So far, the newspaper ad has yet to yield any leads.

Should Gary's identity come to light, Eklund says she would love to meet him, but she says she has no expectations.

"Unless you've walked in (my) shoes, it's hard for people to know it is not a matter of not feeling complete, it's just … curiosity," said Eklund.

Anyone with information that could help identify Eklund's father is being asked to contact Rempel at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

With a report from CTV Calgary's Shaun Frenette and files from The Canadian Press



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Wedding ring lost 15 years ago returned

    World News Toronto Sun
    WHITE TOWNSHIP, N.J. — A Christmas tree farmer has found and returned a wedding ring a New Jersey man lost roughly 15 years ago. David Penner says his wedding band slipped off his finger during a visit to Wyckoff’s Tree Farm in White Township with his wife years ago. Source
  • B.C. boy with mysterious broken bones returned to parents

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    VANCOUVER — While watching their son and daughter play in a home near Vancouver’s children’s hospital, a couple from northern British Columbia received the news they had been praying for. The Ministry of Children and Family Development had seized their two children for the second time in October, because their five-year-old son kept suffering unexplained broken bones. Source
  • Boy, 14, killed trying to jump from NYC train to platform

    World News Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — Police say a 14-year-old boy has died while attempting to perform a dangerous stunt at a New York City subway station. The New York Police Department says the boy was riding between the cars of a southbound L train when he tried to jump onto the platform at the New Lots Avenue station in Brooklyn around 10:40 p.m. Source
  • Admitted Calgary killer testifies of assassination plan outside courthouse

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Purported gangsters planned to murder a rival gang member as he arrived at court to be sentenced for shooting his own rivals, court heard Wednesday. The Crown’s star witness in the murder conspiracy case, an admitted killer himself who has been granted immunity for his testimony, said he conducted taped conversations with all three accused. Source
  • Trump to meet with victims of Ohio State University attack

    World News Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — Donald Trump is going to try to show a more sensitive side Thursday, meeting with victims of last week’s Ohio State University attack, before taking his “thank you” road show to three more states that supported him in the election. Source
  • Dads beware: Men over 50 most at risk of Christmas-related injury

    Canada News CTV News
    The next time you see Dad hanging awkwardly off the roof trying to put up Christmas lights, don't believe him when he says "I've got this." That overconfidence puts him at higher risk of being injured in a fall this holiday season, according to the B.C. Source
  • Human rights group, worried about HIV, urges Philippines action

    World News CTV News
    MANILA, Philippines -- A human rights group says the Philippines is facing one of the fastest growing epidemics of HIV in the Asia Pacific, fueled by government policies that restrict intervention, including access to condoms by men who have sex with men. Source
  • Driver of deadly crash had history of accidents, seizures

    World News Toronto Sun
    BALTIMORE — The man who crashed a Baltimore school bus into a transit bus, killing himself and five other people, had been in at least a dozen car accidents in the past five years, had a history of seizures and other medical issues, and recently had his commercial driver’s license privileges suspended because of an outdated medical certificate, according to federal transportation investigators. Source
  • Accused pizza shop gunman says he regrets how he handled the situation

    World News Toronto Sun
    SALISBURY, N.C. — The man accused of firing an assault rifle inside a Washington restaurant said he regrets how he handled the situation but refused to completely dismiss the false online claims involving a child sex ring that brought him there. Source
  • Police arrest 18-year-old in baseball bat attack on Hamilton teen

    Canada News CBC News
    Hamilton police have arrested and charged an 18-year-old with aggravated assault and robbery in connection with the attack on Noah Rabbani, the 15-year-old who was brutally beaten while walking home from a friend's house late last month. Source