An Idaho family’s photos of their trip to Ireland were thought to be lost forever when their camera fell off the roof of their rental car last month.
Colby and Molly Patchin, from Meridian, Idaho, were traveling to the Cliffs of Moher with their 9-month-old daughter, Olivia, on Oct. 7 when they forgot the camera was on the car, the Idaho Statesman reported.
When they later discovered the camera was missing, they assumed it had fallen on the side of Route 478, likely in some tall grass, and that it would be impossible to find.
“We didn’t figure anyone would find it,” said Colby.
They left notice about their missing camera at a nearby visitor center in case someone discovered it, but never expected to hear anything. Then, about a week and a half later, a photo of the family that was on the missing camera was posted on Facebook and several people recognized them.
“Someone recognized the hat I was wearing as a Boise State hat and they ended up tagging the Boise State Broncos in the post, and within a few hours, she had probably four or five text messages from her sister and friends and her brother-in-law saying they had seen it,” Colby said.
The camera was found a mile or two from the Cliffs of Moher.
“It was in a pretty remote area of Ireland and this gal just happened to be backpacking across Europe with a friend and they walked from this little port town where you take the boats to go see the Cliffs of Moher tour. They were walking from that town to the cliffs the next day and happened to see it in the grass along the side of the road,” Patchin said. “It was actually quite a ways from the parking lot that we had left from.”
The Patchins also had a larger digital SLR camera with them on their trip so they were still able to take photos during their vacation, but the smaller camera had other photos from Ireland and a trip they had taken earlier this year.
The Patchins will have to wait another month for the woman who found the camera to finish her backpacking trip and send their camera back, but the family has asked her to download the images and send them electronically first in case something happens to the camera in transit.
Colby said he’s grateful that the woman made the effort to find the camera’s owner. He added that he was also glad he wore such a distinctive cap in the photo.
“I may have to start wearing hats more often,” he said.