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Stolen keepsake returned after mom's emotional plea on Facebook - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Stolen keepsake returned after mom's emotional plea on Facebook

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Cathy Greiner took to Facebook when she realized a wooden box that belonged to her daughter was stolen. (KWTX) Cathy Greiner took to Facebook when she realized a wooden box that belonged to her daughter was stolen. (KWTX)
The keepsake box belonged to the woman's daughter, Traci Greiner. (KWTX) The keepsake box belonged to the woman's daughter, Traci Greiner. (KWTX)

By the time Cathy Greiner realized she left her car unlocked after unloading groceries last Wednesday, it was too late. Somebody had already broken in. 

But Greiner wasn't concerned about the purse or loose change that was stolen.

She had only one thing on her mind: a tiny trinket box that belonged to her eldest daughter, Traci, who was killed two years ago.

The Lampasas, Texas, woman took a deep breath as she checked the car's center console. 

When she saw the small wooden box was missing, she broke down in tears.

"It was something that meant nothing to anybody else," Greiner told CBS affiliate KWTX.

The box contained a few charms and other miscellaneous items, but it was the box itself that meant the most to Greiner.

"She had very few material possessions," Greiner said. "It was something that I could not replace, something that I could not have for her children when they grow up."

Police found Greiner's purse a few blocks away later that day, but the box was nowhere in sight.

Desperate, Greiner took to Facebook, pleading for the return of the priceless item.

"I opened my car door this a.m. to find that my car had been ransacked...Aside from the obvious feeling of violation, the worst part is that inside my purse was a small wooden box, about the size of a box of matches, that contained small gemstones and a fairy," Greiner wrote. "This was about the only thing I have (had) that belonged to my daughter Traci. It was a brown wooden box with the word 'believe' etched into it. I cannot replace this item."

Dozens of people shared Greiner's message and word quickly spread about the tiny, engraved box.

Greiner even said she'd offer a reward if it was returned.

Luckily, that wasn't necessary.

The next morning, Greiner noticed her mailbox was open. As she walked over to close it, she saw a shadow inside. 

She reached in and pulled out the trinket box — with everything still inside.

"With all of the bad stuff that goes on in the world nowadays, that even somebody that takes off on a bad direction or a bad path still has enough in their heart to where maybe they decide they don't want to hurt other people," Greiner said.

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