JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It was a four dollar purchase at a local bargain store that has a Jacksonville woman searching for answers.
She said she is afraid it will fall into the wrong hands so she reached out to First Coast News to help track down the owner.
When Melissa bought this metal box from Jax Bargain Pickers, she had no idea what was inside.
But when she got home and started to look through the papers, she realized she had some very important documents that defined the life of a complete stranger.
A man named Terrell Warburton Rees.
His driver's license, passport, original social security card, military papers and even an unsigned will. But what pulled at her heartstrings the most was a note written in his will about assisted suicide.
"I would just think that maybe in the afterlife he might thank me to think his reputation, his credit, even though he was in a bad spot that didn't carry on," Melissa said.
She said in her heart it felt wrong to throw all this out and she worried that someone else could steal his identity. Because sometimes a person's name and legacy is all they leave behind.
"I wouldn't want his to go, knowing I had touched it and handled it, to go someplace wrong," Melissa said.
First Coast News took the information from these documents and began searching. A few hours later, we found Rees' ex-wife in Seattle.
She helped get us in contact with Rees's brother, and we gave that information back to Melissa.
Now she knows who all of this rightly belongs to.
"So even if it is not worth more than the paper it was written on it may mean something to someone," Melissa said.
First Coast News