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Postcard sent back with 1956 postmark

/ Source: The Associated Press

Talk about lost in the mail. A postcard sent from a Stetson home to a man in Riverside, Calif., was returned this week with a "return to sender" stamp — and its 1956 postmark.

Mack McCormick, 59, did not send the postcard, but he lives in the home where the postcard originated. It was delivered to his mailbox Monday.

"The card apparently has been in the twilight zone for 50 years," McCormick said. "It's not wrinkled or anything."

He used the Internet to track down the author of the note, George Hitz, 64, who now lives in Sudbury, Mass.

"I had to keep asking questions and pull it out of Mack," Hitz said. "It wasn't obvious to me that he lived in our house."

Hitz, a former ham radio operator included his age on the postcard and information about a radio contact he made in February 1956 with someone he called "Chief Operator Dave." No street address was included for Dave, which may explain why the postcard was not delivered, postal officials said.

It is unlikely the postcard spent the last 50 years in a DeLand post office, said Joseph Breckenridge, U.S. Postal Service spokesman for Central and North Florida. The local post office has not been in the same location that long, and maintenance workers would have found it if it had been trapped in a sorting machine, Breckenridge said.

The card may have been sent to California and was rediscovered recently by someone who dropped it back in the mail, Breckenridge said.

Hitz said he is not interested in getting his old postcard back. McCormick plans to frame it.