Jill Stawicki and her mother, Donna, endured a horrible tragedy. Their entire home was ravished by a recent tornado in East Moline, IL. Just about everything they owned was destroyed, including many of the family heirlooms in the attic.
One particular heirloom had Jill and her mother in a panic.
The two women were married in the same vintage wedding dress. First her mother in 1958, then Jill in 1987. It felt like a loss of a part of their family history when the tornado swept it away. Then something incredible happened. Days later, a newspaper delivery man in Le Claire, IA — a town two miles across the Mississippi River — discovered the dress on a hillside near the river. The Le Claire Police Department tirelessly tried to find the owner.
Through a viral Facebook post, the dress was returned to Jill and Donna in pristine condition.
“The tornadoes took out our houses, all these trees and whole neighborhoods — and yet, [they] just blew away this dress and gently laid it down,” Jill told ABC News. “Isn’t that crazy? It wasn’t soiled at all, and the box still had the protective plastic wrap around it. It is so incredible, the little pieces of our life we are getting back.”
The mother and daughter were in tears. Sometimes when you lose everything, it’s tiny reminders like this that foster hope and keep us going.
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