Man who found missing briefcase full of family photos delivers it to rightful owner

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — After family members recognized their photos in a missing briefcase shown in a story on NewsChannel 9, they were able to connect the man who found it with its rightful owner.

Dimitri Romanenko found the briefcase left in a garbage can at Elmwood Park in Syracuse last week.

Thanks to your help sharing our story, this lost gem made its way back home.

Romanenko hand-delivered the briefcase to Dorothy Cooper, the niece of Geraldine Neary and Robert “Bob” Hunt. They’re the late couple who owned the lost treasure.

“It was just too perfect. It worked out great,” — Dimitri Romanenko

After seeing our story, Cooper and her brother immediately reached out to Romanenko to claim the lost gem.

I think it’s fabulous because now we get to look at them and get the pictures to the right owners. A lot of these pictures will probably go to the Neary family and some of them will go the Hunt family.

Dorothy Cooper, Niece of Briefcase Owner

How the briefcase ended up in the garbage can in Elmwood Park is still a mystery.

“I think it was a shame that someone would just abandon pictures like this because you cannot replace these,” Cooper said. “These are irreplaceable and I just think it’s a tragedy that they would just discard somebody else’s property like this. Who did it? I have no idea.”

However, Cooper is forever grateful for Romanenko bringing this family treasure back home.

“I think that it was meant to happen the way that it did because it was just so perfect,” Romanenko said.

“It just brings back a lot of memories and I’m sure once everybody else looks at these pictures, they’ll bring back memories for them too,” — Dorothy Cooper

Memories that this family will hold onto for generations to come.

Cooper says she’s still looking through the photos but once she’s done, she plans to divide them and give them to other members of her family.

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