DENVER
03/18/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Walsenburg Student Returns Library Books Half Century Late

Phoenix (AP)--A high school librarian in Phoenix says a former student at the school returned two overdue books checked out 51 years ago along with a $1,000 money order to cover the fines.

Camelback High School librarian Georgette Bordine says the two Audubon Society books checked out in 1959 and the money order were sent by someone in Walsenburg, Colorado, who wanted to remain anonymous.

Bordine says the letter explained that the borrower's family moved to Colorado and the books were mistakenly packed. The letter said the money order was to cover fines of 2 cents per day for each book. That would total about $745. The letter says the extra money was added in case the rates had changed.

According to the Arizona Republic:

The school's principal wrote a thank-you letter and sent it to Walsenburg. "It's saying something about our alumni," Bordine said. "We put some very fine people out there. They don't forget their early mistakes and they try to correct them."

The school's current policy does not allow students to graduate if they neglect to pay overdue book fees.