An employee working on a remodeling project at a historic theater in California found a wallet that was lost by a patron 46 years earlier.
Tom Stevens said he was in a crawlspace underneath the balcony at the Majestic Ventura Theater in Ventura when he found a wallet among the ticket stubs, empty drink containers and candy wrappers.
The wallet contained some old photos, a ticket stub for a 1973 Grateful Dead concert and a California driver’s license that expired in 1976.
Stevens said he searched online for Colleen Distin, the name on the driver’s license, but was unable to find any information. His boss, Loanne Wullaert, suggested he use the theater’s Facebook page to attempt to find the owner.
“Does anyone know Colleen Distin?” the post states. “While doing some maintenance we have found her wallet.”
The post was widely shared and eventually reached Distin, a lifelong resident of Ventura.
“It says a lot about our society, that people are looking for a human story and something to feel good,” Distin told the Ventura County Star.
Distin said she lost her wallet while watching a movie at the theater in 1975. She said she called the business the next day after discovering her wallet was missing, but was disappointed to learn it hadn’t been found by employees.
Distin said the cash that was in her wallet when she lost it had apparently been removed by someone who tossed it into the crawlspace, but she was overjoyed to be reunited with photos she never expected to see again.
“It’s very emotional,” Distin said. “It kind of caught me off guard. I was excited but then all of the sudden you start seeing things and you go back into your past. It’s like a time capsule.”