Have you ever lost something? I don’t mean a love that you still pine after, but rather something—an item of some sort.
Does it drive you mad thinking about it? Wondering where you dropped it or set it down, only to never see it again? Did someone steal it? You start to feel like you’re losing your mind.
Imagine that happening in a foreign country, during war time, with your wallet. As if you didn’t have enough stress going on in your life at that time, right?
That’s exactly what happened to Eligio Ramos of California. He and his battalion took shelter in an Austrian farmhouse back in 1945, and it was there that he lost his wallet. Flash forward to 2015, when a doctor by the name of Josef Ruckhofer, whose late grandfather owned that farmhouse over in Austria, began to do some renovations at the old farmhouse. The wallet was discovered, and Ruckhofer did some research based upon the old army ID card in the wallet, locating Ramos.
Eventually, the wallet was returned to Ramos, and it was quite a rush to see the old, weathered wallet—filled with photos of many family members, who have since become grown-ups.
It’s nice to know that there are good people in this world who return items to their rightful owners when they are found. It’s also a reminder of how quickly time flies in this lifetime. One of the photos in Ramos’ wallet was of his entire battalion group. He is now the sole survivor.
Phil and I were talking about this story and how those who served in World War II are passing away, with so few from that generation around to share their stories. We hear stories in the media about endangered species all the time, but the reality is—that’s exactly what those folks from the greatest generation are—so if you have grandparents alive yet, make it a point to spend some time with them. Set up a video camera and document their stories. What could have been lost forever, will be found quite interesting by future generations.