"We walked through a dried-up swamp where we came across what looked like trash," Stankiewicz, 21, told Yahoo News. "It was encrusted in dirt and mud, but sure enough it was a thick women's wallet."
Inside, Stankiewicz found a Connecticut drivers license, Social Security card (remember when people used to carry those around in their wallets?), credit cards, an insurance card and a membership card for the "McDonald's Golden Arches" club. There were also photos that had been badly damaged by the elements.
The wallet belonged to a woman named Doris H. Coulombe, Stankiewicz said. When he looked her up, he discovered that she'd died last year at age 95. "She lived in West Haven, Conn., basically all of her life with most of her family. It was about 15 minutes from where the wallet was located," he said.
Stankiewicz is trying to track down Coulombe's family. He's reached out to them via Facebook but has yet to hear back.
"I would love to contact them and ask them if they remember any story of her losing her wallet so long ago," he said. He estimates that she must have lost the wallet 25 to 30 years ago because the credit cards were all expired by 1987.
Stankiewicz said he and his friend had an emotional reaction to finding the wallet.
"This to us is a treasure and holds a lot more than just credit cards, IDs and pictures. This wallet holds a story. Why was it in the middle of the woods like this? It really makes you think of what could have happened. We also found a Peninsula AAA card. Did she also live in Florida for a time being or during the summer? You can tell a lot about a person just by what they carry. Although this stuff has no value, it really is true treasure and I hope that it is something the family would want to see."
- credit cards