When a Man Rescued This Old Trunk from a Dumpster, What He Found Inside Brought the Owner to Tears

When a Man Rescued This Old Trunk from a Dumpster, What He Found Inside Brought the Owner to Tears
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If you saw something that peaked your curiosity would you jump in a dumpster to grab it? Roger Briney did and took that leap into a dumpster to rescue an old wooden box. What he found inside was more valuable to the owner than any amount of money, and it led to an incredible reunion for several others.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

At some point in life, most people realize that their most valuable possession is the memorabilia collected at various points of interest in their lives. Those seemingly invaluable trinkets can bring a flood of memories from one’s life story. Imagine losing a box of your family memories and have it returned to you years later. Receiving such an amazing gift from a stranger would be a surprise!

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

To add a little background to the story’s savior of the treasured box, Mr. Briney. He served in the military in the 1970’s in the U.S. infantry, and later joined the National Guard. He also worked at the Arlington National Cemetery. While taking out his trash one day, he noticed an old tattered wooden box that seemed out of place in the dumpster, so he dove in to rescue the trunk.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Briney later confessed that his real motivation from the dumpster dive was because he spotted a United States flag poking out of one edge of the box’s lid. Being a military man, this angered him into action because he thought someone had thrown the flag away. While saving the flag, he actually saved someone’s cherished memories without realizing it at the time.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

After saving the box from the sure death of the trash compactor, he took the trunk home. Having a busy life and no time to rummage through the box at the time, Briney stored it in his basement with other forgotten items. The box remained forgotten for almost a year before being disturbed again.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Briney had taken the flag to wash and care for it properly but didn’t explore the box’s contents at the time. On more than one occasion he planned to take the flag to be disposed of at his local American Legion, but something always happened that kept him from his mission…and from exploring the box.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

One day, a friend of Briney, Walker Gaulding, who also happened to be a history buff and collector, went to Briney’s home to pick up an old military desk. While moving the desk, he came upon the old tattered wooden box rescued from the trash compactor. Gaulding’s curious nature drew him to see if Briney would let him have the box.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Briney let him take the box because he hadn’t wanted to rummage through it to find out who might have been the owner. Briney explained later that he was afraid the owner’s family had thrown it out.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Gaulding was all too happy to take the box home. Treating it like the new-found treasure it was, he hurriedly put it in his trunk and drove away with some fear that Briney would change his mind. When he arrived home, Gaulding presented the box to his wife, and together they began to explore the contents. The box contained some unexpected treasures.

The flag was cleaned, folded, and returned to the old wooden box where it belonged. Under the flag, Gaulding found a treasure of old passports, photographs, newspaper articles, an old cigarette lighter, and more. The Gaulding’s decided they should try to locate the owner of the box.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Gaulding quickly found the owner of the trunk; one Lieutenant Colonel Clyde N. Parthree. Parthree was a U.S. Air Force pilot during World War 2 and had died in 1966. It seemed that the box hadn’t been opened since his death, so everything in the box was perfectly preserved after several years.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Nigel Mulvena, a friend of Gaulding, stopped by for a visit shortly after Gaulding discovered the contents of the box. The two decided it best to return the box to the rightful owner and began searching the internet for Parthree’s family members.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Mulevna located Parthree’s granddaughter, Cindy Blass. He managed to contact her to let her know that her grandfather’s box full of his belongings was found. She was shocked by the news, but not nearly as much as Don, Parthree’s son, who never gave up looking for his father’s the wooden box.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Don Parthree, who is 79 years old, had spent years talking about the old box and never gave up hope of seeing it again. The box hadn’t been seen for 25 years, and the Parthree family members had no idea where the old box had gone.

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Parthree’s family members gathered together to make the trip to Gaulding’s home to pick up the old box. They never thought the trunk would surface again, and it brought them wonderful memories of their lost family member.

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15858-presscdn-0-65.pagely.netdna-cdn.com

Don was unable to contain his excitement! One of the first things Don did was to put on his father’s flight cap just like when he was a young man. As he removed each item in the box, he had a story to share about his father. It was an enjoyable walk down memory lane for everyone present.

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For each tale Don told about his father, who died some 50 years ago, he breathed life into his father’s life. Don shared that his father was a strict man, but had an open heart and would help anyone in need. His father wanted Don to join the Air Force, but he went for love instead.

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Don shared that his father received a metal for 15,000 accident-free flight miles, and flew the King of Belgium. After the war, he served as a personal pilot for two generals and was a test pilot for the “wingless wonder” airplane. Don shared his priceless memories over an old box of trinkets with his family and new friends and brought closure to a family loss.