WWI love letters reach rightful owner 95 years later

WWI love letters reach rightful owner 95 years later (Image 1)

Letters from a World War I soldier in France written to his wife back home in Phoenix, Arizona have finally found their way to their rightful owner 95 years later.

Nathan Byrd began writing the letters to his wife, Lota Byrd, in 1918, ABC News reported.

“I will be thinking of you while I am marching,” one of them read. “I will go with the regiment and be discharged. Then home tout de suite to my own darling girl… Will close with all my love to you and baby… Best wishes to all. I am, as ever, your loving Nathan.”

Byrd survived the war and moved home where he lived with his wife and two children for 11 years before their marriage fell apart.

About 30 years ago, a realtor named Sheryl Caliguire found the bundle of love letters in an empty carport.

At the time, she lived in the same condominium complex as Byrd’s wife, Lota, but had no idea.

Caliguire took the letters with her, knowing one day she’d find the rightful owner, unaware that she could’ve just walked them right upstairs.

“We lived in the same condo, although she was probably in her 80s and I was in my early 20s,” she explained. “I had seen her, but we never were acquaintances.”

Caliguire and her military husband moved around a lot since then. She tried finding the family but it didn’t get very far.

Finally, she reached out to a local TV station in Phoenix, Arizona for help.

ABC News reports the TV station found an old census, connected the name to a recent obituary and found an address in Portland, Oregon.

The address belonged to Byrd’s granddaughter, Adajian.

“When I was growing up he was long out of the picture,” she said. “We asked my dad about him a couple of times and he made very brief comments and that was the total sum of everything we knew about him.”

Adajian told ABC that it was incredible to finally get to know someone that was so lost to her.

The personal letters have given her a first-ever glimpse into her grandfather and his relationship with her grandmother.

“The most interesting part to me is just thinking about my grandmother as a young woman and being in love with someone and enduring that separation,” Adajian explained.

Not to mention, she added, “Getting to know my grandfather as a person, not just an entity, but now really seeing his personality.”

*ABC News contributed to this report.

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