When Marion Shurtleff bought a Bible at her local bookstore, her purchase restored a part of her past.
The 75-year-old California woman found an essay she wrote as a child in Kentucky tucked inside the Bible she bought in San Clemente, Fox News reports. She wrote the paper 65 years ago to earn a Girl Scouts badge in her hometown of Covington, Ky.
“I opened the Bible and there was my name,” Shurtleff said. “I recognized my handwriting. I was shaking, literally. I was crying.”
It was only two months after Shurtleff bought the Bible when she decided to open up a yellow folded letter inside. The essay read in part, “Be kind to animals. Do not pick flowers. Don’t walk on the grass.”
“It’s three pages, almost four. This was the requirement for the foot traveler badge,” she told NewsNet5. Her essay recounted a day hike she took with her troop.
In 1964, Shurtleff moved from Kentucky to California with her husband. The couple had two children who she raised alone after he died at a young age, the Orange County Register reports.
Shurtleff’s discovery raises the question as to how her bible ended up 2,000 miles away from its original home with her childhood note still inside. The only clue Shurtleff has is the name “Bonnie Gene Edwards,” who she thinks was an assistant at her school, CBS Los Angeles reports.
She has contacted the bookstore to see if she could gather any information about the book’s previous owner, but so far no leads.
Shurtleff, a cancer survivor, says she’s not losing hope and plans on finding the bible’s owner.
“I think there’s got to be a tie to the person who kept this. Why would they keep it?” she wonders. “Maybe it was sent to me for a reason. Maybe that person should be in my life.”
Shurtleff says the discovery may be a sign from above.
“I’ve moved too many times. I’ve been down to bare bones. That Bible could have been in Timbuktu, or Alaska. I believe it’s God showing His Grace to us and His love, making us aware that there are stranger things that happen.”