HABERSHAM COUNTY, Ga. - An Army uniform and medals locked away in a storage unit ended up in someone else's hands when that unit was auctioned off. James May bought the contents of that unit and said when he saw the suitcase filled with military memories, he knew he had to track down the owner.
“As soon as I opened it and saw all the medals and the uniform I knew somebody had to get this back,” said May.
May spent 25 years in the National Guard. He said he knows how important it would be to the owner, but he didn't have much to go on. He had the last name from the tag on the uniform and he knew the owner was in the Army. May posted photos on Facebook and was overwhelmed with the response.
“In less than 24 hours it had been shared more than 850 times and I had about 30 phone calls from people across the country wanting to help me track down the owner,” said May.
Jay Mulkey who was in Flowery Branch started getting phone calls too. Mulkey had been in the Army Reserves for six years. He had been to Afghanistan and received a number of medals. He said the military was a big part of his life and he kept most everything from those six years. He said he put the suitcase in a Gainesville storage unit about a year ago, but soon after he fell on hard times, could no longer make the payments and lost it.
Mulkey made arrangements to meet May and get his suitcase back. As he looked through the items, he said he never thought he'd see any of it again.
“This is very sentimental to me, it's still the original, nothing has changed since I got it in 2006,” said Mulkey.