Contractor John Murray and his crew were tearing down walls of a 1950s home in North Phoenix, Arizona when they stumbled upon a time capsule. Murray told KPNX 12 News, “It was on the floor over there with a pile of insulation…We’ve done hundreds of houses but never found anything like this.”
The partially opened time capsule contained a family photo and a letter dated September 27, 1966. 33-year-old Betty Klug wrote the message that mentioned the political and cultural climate, including, “The Vietnam War is still going on. Racial situation very serious. Boys have long hair resulting from the Beatles craze.”
KPNX helped Murray track down the family described in the time capsule. After some research, they found 79-year-old Bruce Klug, the family patriarch, living in Scottsdale. The two men arranged to meet and Murray presented the time capsule’s contents to Klug. It was the first time that Bruce had heard about the capsule, as he didn’t know Betty had even left it in the old home they sold in the 1980s.
The unearthed capsule also dug up memories and emotions in the widower. Bruce discovered that Betty buried the time capsule on his 31st birthday. Just 10 years later, Betty died in a car crash. “I don’t know how I did it — went back to work within a week…We had the best marriage. Not once did we argue about anything,” Bruce said, fighting back tears. Other pieces of information that Betty included allowed Mr. Klug to chuckle and recall old times with a smile.
Bruce told the station that aside from his wife’s observations of the world in 1966, the biggest message Betty’s time capsule can teach us is to value those that you love because life is unpredictable. It’s a lesson that John Murray has taken to heart saying, “I just think I’m going to value things a little bit differently.”
After reading through Betty’s letter, Bruce told John, “I enjoyed it. Thanks.”