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House owner seeks author of decades-old love letters found during renovation

A bag of “poetic” love letters written about 50 years ago was found in a ceiling during renovation. The house owner has turned to social media for help in finding the author so she can return his amazingly well-hidden possessions.

“May nahanap kaming bag puno ng sponge, handwritten love letters (in poetic English), at mga pahina mula sa isang Tagalog romantic novel. Nakalagay ‘to sa loob ng kisame namin (as in sa LOOB). Pinapalitan kasi namin,” said Gela Petines, a social entrepreneur, in a public Facebook post on Monday, June 22.

The vintage find came with voter’s and employee’s identification cards belonging to a certain Alfredo Custodio.

Gela further wrote, “Hula namin, 1970s pa ‘to naiwan (o iniwan?) ni Alfredo Custodio, isang construction worker ng H.L. Carlos Construction. 64 years old na dapat siya ngayon at gusto sana namin siya mahanap para mabalik yung bag at mga sulat niya sa kasintahan niya.

An old, faded photo was also found with the stash. “May naiwan din siyang picture. Salamat sa technology, kaya idevelop sa phone ang negatives.”

She then asked netizens to “please help us find Mr. Alfredo Custodio mula Pangasinan. Napakagaling niyo po Sir magsulat!”

In messages to The STAR’s Lateschika.com, Gela detailed how these roughly half-a-century-old letters were accidentally discovered.

“(They were found) when we tore down our ceiling. It was inside, between the ceiling and the roof. This house was built in the ’70s. We’re the first settlers here (my lolo bought the lot),” she said.

“They were all loosely folded and stuffed in the bag with sponges. It could have been on purpose or coincidental, but it kept the papers protected from moisture or water,” she added.

As of Monday evening, some four hours after she first posted about it, Gela gave an update that someone has already messaged her, claiming to be a relative and neighbor — not a sibling as earlier thought — of the person in the photo.

“EDIT/ as of June 22, 9:45pm may nag-chat sa akin na taga barangay niya,” she wrote.

“Mukhang nandito pa siya sa Manila. Sana macontact namin soon,” she added.

Gela also learned that the girl in the old photo, initially presumed as the recipient of the handwritten sweet notes, is Alfredo’s sister.

The post has nevertheless captured the interest and imagination of netizens, generating over 2,000 shares as of writing.

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