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US Postal Service finally delivers postcard mailed in 1943

A postcard mailed from Rockford, Ill., to two sisters in Elmira, NY, in 1943 finally arrived at its destination last week.
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US Postal Service letter carrier Juan Padilla puts letters into a mailbox as he walks his delivery route on Dec. 5, 2011, in San Francisco, Calif. (Justin Sullivan /Getty Images)

A postcard mailed from Rockford, Ill., to two sisters in Elmira, NY, in 1943 finally arrived at its destination last week. After 69 years, a postal worker delivered it to a house along Bridgman Street now owned by Adam and Laura Rundell, the Elmira Star-Gazette reported.

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“It was delivered in mint condition. We were so shocked,” Laura Rundell told the Elmira Star-Gazette. “It’s a treasure that just showed up in the mailbox with our address on it.”

The postcard was sent to Pauline and Theresa Leisenring from their parents, who were visiting their brother George at the Medical Center Barracks at Camp Grant, an Army post during World War II, the Associated Press reported. The family lived in the house at the time.

According to the Elmira Star-Gazette, the parents wrote: “Dear Pauline and Theresa, We arrived safe, had a good trip, but we were good and tired. Geo. looks good, we all went out to dinner today (Sunday). Now we are in the park. Geo has to go back to Grant at 12 o’clock tonight. Do not see much of him. We are going to make pancakes for Geo for supper tonight. See you soon. Love Mother, Dad.”

“Generally, if old mail pieces are uncovered in a postal facility, they are put in the mail with information about where the items are found,” Karen Mazurkiewicz, a spokeswoman for the US Postal Service in Buffalo, told the Elmira Star-Gazette. “My guess is a non-postal individual found it and put it in the mail.” She added: “As long as there is a deliverable address, the postal service will deliver it.”

Unfortunately, the intended recipients of the card are no longer around to read it. Theresa died in 1954 and Pauline died in 1962, according to records at Elmira’s Woodlawn Cemetery, the Elmira Star-Gazette reported.

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