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Exxon CEO's daughter proves paternity, claims extortion

Establishing paternity was the first step for a woman claiming to be the biological daughter of the former head of Texas-based Exxon Mobil Corp. The next legal battle for the Texas woman is a lawsuit accusing her biological mother of keeping money that was supposed to be used for her benefit.

Myron A. Wright, the late CEO of Exxon Mobil, apparently engaged in an affair more than half a century ago with a woman he met on a bus. The product of that short, unmarried relationship was a child, who was put up for adoption in the mid-1950s.

When the adoptive mother was nearing death in 1989, her daughter received a phone call from the biological mother, who told her that Wright was her biological father.

The woman phoned the Exxon Mobil CEO, who admitted he was her father. The father-daughter relationship was confined to phone calls, but through it, she learned of her past.

Wright sent $144,000 to the woman's biological mother to help raise the couple's secret child. The CEO claimed he never knew his daughter was put up for adoption. The support money he paid may have been spent by the biological mother's family, including a husband who reportedly tried to blackmail the CEO.

The adopted woman filed a case against her biological mother and half-brother, claiming the two had stolen her rightful inheritance. Twenty years after learning her true identity, the woman claims the lawsuit has little to do with money.

The woman wants the courts to agree that her father was extorted for money that was never used to support his biological child; a daughter he never realized was adopted. While a parent who cannot raise a child should be respected for making the difficult choice of putting the child up for adoption, if they receive money from the noncustodial parent to provide for the child, then that is what the money should be used for.

Source: Carthage Press, "Texas court: Carthage woman is oilman's daughter," John Hacker, Mar. 27, 2012

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