A Parks Department crew cleaning up the beach in Patchogue, Long Island found a bottle with a message inside it last November. The workers had been cleaning up the mess of debris from Hurricane Sandy when one noticed that the green bottle had a note inside it. The message had a NYC phone number, so parks employee Brian Waldron called it—and discovered that the bottle had been thrown into the water 12 years ago by a 10-year-old girl who died a few years ago at age 18.
According to the AP, the note was written by Sidonie Fery, who paraphrased Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, "Be excellent to yourself, dude." She threw the note off a Long Island shore it's believed the bottle only traveled about a mile. Sidonie died in 2010 when she fell off a cliff in Switzerland, where she attended boarding school.
Waldron left a message at the phone number, and Fery's mother, Mimi Fery, called him back, crying. She told the AP, "I was just sobbing when I heard they had found it. These are very, very kind people." She also described her daughter as "very artistic and vivacious," adding that she was teased by other children for her Persian heritage (Sidonie was born on September 11, 1991).
The village of Patchogue will present Mimi Fery with the bottle, as well as a bottle of sand from the area where the bottle was retrieved, in a ceremony this weekend. A plaque will also be dedicated in her daughter's memory.