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Woman Receives Ashes Of Army Veteran In Mail, Returns Them To Family

02/07/2012 04:31 pm ET

When Karen Smith opened a package addressed to her, she found dog tags and an inscribed urn.

A sad moment made more devastating: They did not belong to her.

The package containing the dog tags and urn had apparently fallen off a truck, when it was mislabeled and sent to the wrong address, ABC reports.

But Smith, a Shelton, Wash., resident who comes from a military family herself, told ABC that she was determined to find the rightful owner. From what little information she could gather, she found out it belonged to a family named Irwin in California.

Her determination paid off: Soon after the initial news report aired, Smith managed to get in touch with Carole Irwin, the daughter of the Randall Irwin, a Vietnam veteran, Fox 5 reports.

"They could have just went ahead and just thrown it away," Irwin told Fox 5. "This person took the time to figure out where this came from."

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