Signed, sealed, undelivered: Old City couple still await their sweetheart letters
Shauna Goodman’s family home in California burnt down when she was a teenager.
The next morning, as she dug through the debris, she found a box full of sweetheart letters and mementos she had exchanged with her eighth-grade boyfriend, Kyle. The pair had met in yearbook class the previous year.
The box, along with other pieces salvaged from the ruins, was deposited into a storage unit for safekeeping. And then the box disappeared — for 13 years.
For seven of those years, Kyle and Shauna have been husband and wife. Two years ago, the couple moved from California to Philadelphia.
About two months ago, Shauna’s mom called with a surprise: She’d found the box and immediately dropped it in the mail.
The couple’s excitement grew and grew. But the letters never arrived to their home.
“It was kind of depressing when I realized, ‘I don’t think it’s coming,” Shauna said. “After all those years they were lost and I got so excited that they were found, and now, I’m kind of back to square one wishing that I never knew that they still existed.”
USPS tracking says the package was delivered, but after several phone calls, conversations and emails, no one can tell the couple where it was delivered to.
“Help” posters went up this past weekend in their Old City apartment building, telling the story and asking for assistance.
“I don’t remember 100 percent what’s in the box, but it was pretty much anything that would have been important to, like, a junior high or high schooler with a boyfriend, like I saved the napkin from our first date, letters we had written each other during class time, things that had we not ended up getting married would have been more or less useless to me now,” Shauna said. “But we’ve been together for a pretty long time and having those would be so awesome just to look back on and to keep in our family.”
Kyle has checked every channel and angle, but no luck. They’re hoping a neighbor accidentally picked it up, or it’s headed back to California as undeliverable mail.
“We don’t want to think the worst,” Kyle said. “You’d think that even if somebody took it and then found the letters, they’d go drop it off somewhere else outside rather than just throw it away.”
Shauna, in the meantime, can’t help but let her mind wander.
“Sometimes you go to the flea markets around town and you see old letters,” she said. “And I go, ‘You know what, ours are going to end up in that someday.’ Someone will have them somewhere and they’re just going to be in a flea market, which is depressing thinking that we could have had ours. And I thought that they were missing for a really long time, like I thought they had been destroyed.
“But, they weren’t,” she said. “And now they’re missing again.”
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