A precious wedding photo album that had been sitting in an airport lost-and-found department for almost a year has finally been returned home.
The Los Angeles Airport Police Honor Guard took a detour to Modesto, California, on Thursday to reunite a family with their briefcase -- with their wedding photo album and other personal items inside -- after they lost it on Sept. 14, 2014, an official told ABC News today.
“We decided to share a photo of the album on Facebook in July and one of the family’s friend’s in northern California told us and the owner about it,” Los Angeles Airport Police officer Rob Pedregon said.
Safiullah Jabarkhail, 30, and his wife were elated to find out the airport had their long-lost album.
“I can’t tell you how happy I am,” Jabarkhail told ABC affiliate KXTV.
The airport lost-and-found typically holds onto items for a maximum of 97 days, but the briefcase with Jabarkhail’s wedding album was an exception.
“It wasn’t something of monetary value like most things we see, but it was something of sentimental value,” Pedregon said.
Jabarkhail was an interpreter for the U.S. Army in Afghanistan for seven years, he told KXTV, before he felt it wasn’t safe for his family to stay in the country. The Taliban was known to offer a $4,000 reward for the death of Afghans who help the U.S. military, KXTV reported.
When he and his family left the country in September 2014, they left the briefcase with no name tag on their plane.
The four members of the honor guard were on their way back from attending the funeral for Hayward police Sergeant Scott Lunger, who was killed in the line of duty last week, Pedregon said, when they made the hour-drive out of their way.
Jabarkhail’s wife, Najia, thanked the officers by cooking a traditional Afghan meal before they drove the rest of the way back to LAX.
The Jabarkhail family could not be reached by ABC News for additional comment.