BEAUFORT COUNTY, SC (WTOC) - A Beaufort County man’s accidental donation led an employee on a mission to return the prized possession.
The item was a shadowbox full of his father’s World War II medals and his own personal belongings.
“It did get donated to Goodwill by accident. I never intended - I didn’t even know I put it in the bin,” Anthony Kollar said.
Anthony Kollar says his daughter made the shadowbox for him years ago. It’s always hung on their wall until he decided to put a fresh coat of paint on the wall. That’s when it was put into the Goodwill donation box. Not knowing the shadowbox was missing, he received a text message later on.
"My wife and I are on a date and I got a text and it says, ‘hey, are you Anthony Kollar,' and I said, ‘I am not answering this text. I don’t know this number. I’m not going to do that,’ he said.
Thinking the text was spam, he blew it off. The next day, he got a phone call from a fellow member of the fire department where Kollar served as the volunteer chaplain.
“He said, ‘hey, have you lost any Navy memorabilia,' and I said ‘no, I haven’t thought about the Navy in decades.’ He said, ‘well, I’m going to send you a picture because Dan Byrne says it sure does look like you.’ I saw the text and I said, ‘yes, I want it. How do I get it?’ I didn’t know what was going on,” Kollar said.
What was really going on is a lady by the name of Jessica worked at Goodwill. Kollar says when Jessica saw the shadowbox, she thought it may have been donated by mistake. After going through several managers, they said she could contact the owner if she could find them. Kollar says she saw the picture of him in his volunteer fire uniform and contacted the fire department.
“It brought tears to my eyes. A lot of sentimental value. My dad’s World War II medals, China expedition, Asia expedition, other things.”
That isn’t the end of this story. The article inside the shadowbox was written by no other than Jessica’s mom back in the 80s.
“I went over to Goodwill the next day. She wasn’t there. Went the next day and met her. She is worth her weight in gold. I’m putting a plug in for her but she deserves a raise, a promotion.”
Kollar says another shock to this story was when WTOC’s Harley Strickland went to interview him. The lady who wrote the article about him had the last name “Harley.” Kollar says it was a sign.