Strangers on social media have helped a daughter reunite her 92-year-old father with his beloved jacket he has treasured since university.
More than 60 years after Mal Osborn earned a varsity letter jacket from the University of Maine as a track runner, he still wore it, that is, until he lost it in October this year.
Mr Osborn, who has lived in Winston-Salem, in the US state of North Carolina, since 1964, told his daughter Beverly Amick he couldn’t find the treasured jacket, the Bangor Daily News reported.
Ms Amick and other relatives retraced Mr Osborn’s usual routes assuming he’d placed the jacket on his car and it had fallen off while he was driving.
When they failed to find it, Ms Amick posted a photo of Mr Osborn on Facebook wearing the jacket at a USA Masters swimming competition in 2016 and asked for help finding it.
“This man would be ecstatic if this well loved jacket was found,” she wrote in the post that was shared more than 1,000 times.
She explained her father’s jacket was his most-prized possession in response to someone on Facebook.
Mr Osborn ran long-distance track and cross-country events from 1949-52 at the University of Maine, the Bangor Daily News reported.
He told the newspaper the letter jacket had become a part of him after so many years.
“I just know how much it meant to him,” Ms Amick told The Associated Press.
“I was going to do everything in my power to find it.”
Heartwarming ending after woman’s Halloween find
Ms Amick said she got an email from a woman who lived near her father and had found the coat in her yard, covered with leaves.
The woman found the jacket around Halloween, but decided to hold on to it, just in case she could find who it belonged to, WFMY-TV reported.
Mr Osborn has been sporting the jacket since Ms Amick had it dry-cleaned and returned it to him, she said.
“As challenging as this year has been, this has given us some hope,” she said.
It was especially poignant given the difficult year everyone has experienced.
“I appreciate all the kindness and compassion that was shown during the last 24 hours. This experience is certainly a positive event to finish out 2020,” she wrote on Facebook after the jacket had been found.
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