SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A file cabinet brought two strangers together after the Craigslist find had the military awards of a woman’s late husband.

Brenda Samsel received the cabinet, and is now giving something back to Michele McCormick she didn’t know was missing.

“When she told me what she’d found, I just, I couldn’t believe it,” McCormick said. It just seemed crazy that I would overlook something like that.”

The two never met, as McCormick left the cabinet on her front lawn to be taken away.

It was a few weeks later when Samsel went through the drawers and found the awards.

“When I saw United States of America, I knew this was something important,” she said.

It was the paperwork to a bronze star, and a Legion of Merit medal, two of the military’s highest awards. both belonged to McCormick’s late husband Donald.

“I knew he had certain awards, but he didn’t really care to talk about them,” Michele McCormick said.

Donald passed away this past February, so when Samsel called McCormick, it was bittersweet.

“It’s kind of hard because you know, it reinforces the quality of the person I lost,” she said.

Donald was a career military man, who retired from the Army as a colonel after 27 years and settling with his wife in Folsom.

She didn’t know just how decorated he was, because she says he was humble.

“He did what he felt was the right thing to do and didn’t really relish or expect recognition,” she said.

Michele says she didn’t know the awards were missing because she’s still going through all of his belongings.

But the recognition is deserved and discovered, thanks to a Craigslist connection.


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