Two sisters separated in their infancy have been reunited after almost 60 years through their love of online bingo. Elaine Walker, from Cleveland Teesside, managed to find her sister Jackie Green late last year, ending a lifetime search. However, to their astonishment, they had been online bingo-buddies for almost 9 years, conversing under their BingoPort player pseudonyms ‘Dukie11’ and ‘Whiskey666’, but oblivious they were related.
Adopted at a very early age, Elaine first learnt she had a sister called Jackie when she turned 25, and was given access to records to start her search for her biological family. Elaine also discovered that she had another sister who was adopted in Bath, but tracking her was made even more difficult due to vital records being destroyed in a fire.
In 2012, Elaine’s daughter, helping in the search, managed to track down a sister and two brothers whom Elaine previously knew nothing of. They all knew of Jackie but had no surname or details. Early in 2015, Elaine was contacted by the heir-hunting organisation, Finders, who was looking for relatives of another lost brother who had died. Despite the sad news Finders was able to provide Jackie's surname - Green.
“I decided to do a bit of searching on Facebook and found a lot of Jacqueline Greens”, said Elaine Walker. “It took me over a week to go through them all, but I suddenly noticed one who shared a lot of mutual friends with me. I clicked on her profile and saw a resemblance and all the mutual friends were from BingoPort! I sent her a message saying our parents’ names and that if they were her parents then I was her sister. Messages flew back and forward then eventually phone calls.”
Discovering that they had been communicating for so long under their aliases during their leisure time on BingoPort was an even bigger surprise. “The phone went silent when I told her I was Dukie11!” said Elaine, describing the moment of astonishment.
Since their initial meeting, Elaine and Jackie speak on the phone every week and are planning to meet again very soon.
Commenting on their incredible reunion, Elaine Walker said: “Whilst the first meeting was certainly emotional, it was as if we had known each other for years. I had a Cheshire Cat grin for ages and I still can't believe how often we were chatting online together over the years without knowing Jackie was my sister.”
A spokesperson for BingoPort commented: “We are aware that many of our players build great friendships through their love of bingo, but to discover a lost relative is by far the biggest prize ever won on BingoPort!”
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