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Woman Receives Late Father’s Message in a Bottle Over 50 Years Later

A piece of history! A New Hampshire woman received a message in a bottle more than 50 years after it was cast into the ocean by her late father, local news station WMUR 9 reports. Watch the clip above to hear her heartwarming story!

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Paul Tsiatsios wrote the note and dropped it in the Atlantic in the 1960s near the Beachcomber Motel in Hampton, New Hampshire, which he used to own with his wife, Tina Tsiatsios.

Flash-forward to 2011. Clint Buffington, a teacher from Utah, was on vacation in Turks and Caicos when he spotted the old Coke bottle sticking out of the sand — 1,500 miles away from its origin.

message in a bottle
The message in a bottle.

Buffington managed to decipher a few legible words in the letter, despite decades of water damage, and combined with his research, was able to determine a return address written on the note.

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It read, “Return to 419 Ocean Blvd. and receive a reward of $150 from Tina, owner of the Beachcomber,” according to WMUR 9.

Buffington traveled cross-country to New Hampshire this October and tracked down Paula Pierce, daughter of the former hotel owners, to pass on her late father’s note. “This is special because it brings back a piece of him, a piece of her, a piece of my childhood, a piece of the Beachcomber,” she told WMUR 9. Both Paul and Tina have since passed away, and the family sold the motel. 

Clint Buffington Paula Pierce
Clint Buffington and Paula Pierce

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While Pierce didn’t know that her father wrote a message in a bottle, her husband knew but never mentioned it. “[My father] told my husband that he did this soon after he bought the motel, which they did in 1960,” she told ABC News. “My husband never told any of us.”

Before Pierce parted ways with Buffington, she insisted on giving him the $150 reward the letter promised. “He didn’t want it, but it completes the circle,” she told ABC News. “I thought he should have it.” 

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