Scot desperately searching for his dad after dying mum confesses his father of 70 years is stepfather

A pensioner born in Edinburgh is desperately trying to find his biological father - after his mum confessed on her deathbed the man he called 'dad' for nearly 70 years was actually his stepfather.

By Scotsman Reporter
Thursday, 8th August 2019, 2:41 pm
Mike Inkster looks at a photo of his mother Mary in WWII with John Lorimer, the man Mike believes is his real biological father. Picture: SWNS
Mike Inkster looks at a photo of his mother Mary in WWII with John Lorimer, the man Mike believes is his real biological father. Picture: SWNS

Former soldier Mike Inkster, 72, was told the shock revelation in 2016 shortly before his mother died.

His mum, Mary, 90, finally told him the truth about his parentage - he was conceived during an illicit wartime fling during the Second World War.

For the past three years, Mike has been trying to find the RAF vet - who was married at the time of the romance - before it is too late.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Mike Inkster looks at a photo of his mother Mary in WWII with John Lorimer, the man Mike believes is his real biological father. Picture: SWNS

Mary confessed that her husband, Douglas "Ike" Inkster, was not her son's real father - although Mike says he 'could not have asked for a better dad'.

Douglas died in 2011 aged 84, taking the famiy's secret to his grave.

Mike believes his real dad was a man named John Lorimer, who was born in Underwood Lane, Paisley, in 1923, and met his mum while based in Edinburgh in 1947.

Mr Lorimer would now be 93 years old - and Mike is convinced he is still alive, as he has been unable to find a death certificate for him.

L-R) Douglas Ike Inkster, Mike Inkster, Mary Inkster and Jenny Inkster in Germany in 1951. Picture: SWNS

Mike said: "I'm surprised at how little it affected me.

"But it did make me wonder.

"For 69 years of my life I assumed my dad was my father and as far as I was concerned he was, because I didn't know any other."

His mother told him she called it off with her beau as she learnt he was married.

Mary met her future husband when Mike was still a baby, and the tot was accepted into the Inkster family - leaving him none the wiser for decades as to who his real dad was.

Mike, who was born in Edinburgh but has lived in Canterbury, Kent for the past 30 years, said: "The story I heard was that my mother found out he was still married.

"Maybe he would've left his wife but my mum left him.

"She's got four brothers and four sisters and they took a pretty dim look at it, so that was the end of that.

"But I was accepted into the family as one of a long line of children."

In a bid to track down his real dad, Mike scoured birth record archives and researched his family tree in the hope of finding some clues as to what happened to Mr Lorimer.

He approached the RAF in search of details, but needed permission from the person or a copy of their death certificate.

The fact he doesn't have it suggests Mr Lorimer is still alive, Mike believes.

Mike said: "My mother thought he was from Paisley.

"I went on to and have lots of DNA hits from my mother's side but no Lorimers.

"I've got birth certificates for two John Lorimers in Paisley from 1923.

"They're about two months apart which really complicates things.

"He could've borrowed a friend's tunic and been having a good time during the war and lying to my mum, but I would be surprised if he wasn't called John Lorimer and wasn't from Paisley."

Mike, who joined the army aged 20 and completed 12 years' service, spent two years of his childhood in Dusseldorf, Germany, where his stepfather was stationed, before moving to Edinburgh.

After studying in the capital, Mike began working as an economist with BP and Shell, before moving to Canada to work in the country's energy sector.

Mike, who lives with his partner of 30 years, Paula, 63, an English teacher, said: "I had a good, happy upbringing - I was very lucky.

"One couldn't have asked for a better dad.

"He sent me to a good school and we went on fantastic holidays."

Given that his father would be in his 90s now, Mike understands he may no longer be alive.

But he is more interested in finding out information about his heritage than finding a new family.

Mike said: "I don't want to go bumbling into someone's second family and say 'I'm your long lost son', but I'm curious.

"I've not got a problem, it won't change my life, but it'd be nice to know.

"It's my heritage and a whole side of my family who I don't know who they are and what they did.

"It'd be nice to know what he did in the war.

"It makes him sound like an interesting character I'd like to meet."