John and Irene Wigham (left) and Keitha and Leon Phillips show off the postcard the Phillips sent from Hawaii in 1980 that arrived at the Wighams’ house in Chilliwack last week, 38 years later. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

John and Irene Wigham (left) and Keitha and Leon Phillips show off the postcard the Phillips sent from Hawaii in 1980 that arrived at the Wighams’ house in Chilliwack last week, 38 years later. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

B.C. couple receive postcard mailed 38 years ago

Arrived in perfect condition from friends who visited Hawaii in January 1980

When John and Irene Wigham received a postcard last week at their Chilliwack home they were a little puzzled.

It came from Hawaii from their good friends Leon and Keitha Phillips.

But the Phillips hadn’t been to Hawaii for nearly four decades.

A postcard mailed by Keith and Leon Phillips on Jan. 22, 1980 from Hawaii that arrived at its destination in Chilliwack on Oct. 18, 2018. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

Dated Jan. 22, 1980 with a postmark from the Honolulu postmaster that same day, the postcard took close to 39 years to be delivered.

The postcard, in near perfect condition, had a 10-cent U.S. stamp on it with the words: “People’s right to petition for redress,” a reference to a right under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

It arrived on Oct. 18, addressed to the Wighams where they still live on McSween Road. Missing on the postcard was the postal code, which back in 1980 hardly seems like a reason for mail to not get to its destination.

Where it sat all this time is a mystery to all of them. All four are in their 80s now, living in Chilliwack as they all have for most of their lives, and they are still close friends.

“It had been in such good shape you kind of wonder, where had it been?” Irene said during a recent visit.

“It doesn’t look like its been tossed around at all,” John said.

The Pearl Harbour memorial in Honolulu, Hawaii, the image on a postcard that took 38 years to arrive in Chilliwack. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

“It’s not unheard of that thing happens but it’s just the length of time,” Keitha added.

In 2014, there was a news story about a letter between two Alberta sisters that took 45 years to arrive, so it has been known for mail to be lost for decades.

The image on the postcard the Phillips sent to the Wighams is described on the back as “The World Famous U.S.S. Arizona Memorial” in Pearl Harbour. The photo is an aerial view of the silhouette of the Battleship Arizona resting on the ocean floor with the memorial on the surface “dedicated to the everlasting memory of those lives in the historic attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.”

On the card addressed to “Johnny & Irene,” the Phillips wrote a short message: “We have been lucky and had good weather, this place is sure not what I thought it would be. We have been almost all the way around this island of Oahu by bus and we did get a U-drive. See you soon.”

Upon hearing about the postcard the whole family had a good laugh.

• RELATED: Canada Post union announces rotating strikes in four Canadian cities

• RELATED: How to get government cheques if Canada Post staff go on strike


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

A postcard mailed by Keith and Leon Phillips on Jan. 22, 1980 from Hawaii that arrived at its destination in Chilliwack on Oct. 18, 2018. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

A postcard mailed by Keith and Leon Phillips on Jan. 22, 1980 from Hawaii that arrived at its destination in Chilliwack on Oct. 18, 2018. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

The Pearl Harbour memorial in Honolulu, Hawaii, the image on a postcard that took 38 years to arrive in Chilliwack. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

The Pearl Harbour memorial in Honolulu, Hawaii, the image on a postcard that took 38 years to arrive in Chilliwack. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

Just Posted

Cases have gone up in Northern Health in the past week, as they have all over B.C. (K-J Millar/Black Press Media)
Northern Health reports new highest number of COVID-19 cases in one day

Nineteen cases were reported to Public Health last Tuesday (Nov. 17)

New COVID-19 restrictions forced the cancellation of the in-person portion of the second annual Festival of Trees event scheduled for Nov. 20 -21 in Terrace. (Pexels)
In-person event cancelled, online auction still a go for Terrace’s Festival of Trees

Dr. R.E.M. Lee Hospital Foundation was planning to host the event at Heritage Park

FILE – British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry wears a face mask as she views the Murals of Gratitude exhibition in Vancouver, on Friday, July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Masks now mandatory in all public indoor and retail spaces in B.C.

Many retailers and businesses had voiced their frustration with a lack of mask mandate before

(Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared Thursday.
COVID-19 outbreak at LNG Canada Project site

14 employees have tested positive for COVID-19 at this time

Bob Wilson uses a garden hose to protect a wood shed as his daughter’s home burns nearby on Oct. 7, 2020. (Photo courtesy Natasha Candelora)
Foster family loses Old Remo home to fire

B.C. ministry unhelpful in aftermath of fire, family says

Kyle Charles poses for a photo in Edmonton on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Marvel Entertainment, the biggest comic book publisher in the world, hired the 34-year-old First Nations illustrator as one of the artists involved in Marvel Voice: Indigenous Voices #1 in August. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
VIDEO: Indigenous illustrator of new Marvel comic hopes Aboriginal women feel inspired

Kyle Charles says Indigenous women around the world have reached out

This 2019 photo provided by The ALS Association shows Pat Quinn. Quinn, a co-founder of the viral ice bucket challenge, died Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020, at the age of 37. (Scott Kauffman/The ALS Association via AP)
Co-founder of viral ALS Ice Bucket Challenge dies at 37

Pat Quinn was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, in 2013

Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada David Lametti speaks with the media following party caucus in Ottawa, Tuesday, January 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Exclusion of mental health as grounds for assisted death is likely temporary: Lametti

Senators also suggested the exclusion renders the bill unconstitutional

Claudio Mastronardi, Toronto branch manager at Carmichael Engineering, is photographed at the company’s offices in Mississauga, Ont., Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. As indoor air quality becomes a major concern in places of business, HVAC companies are struggling to keep up with demand for high quality filtration systems. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Business is booming for HVAC companies as commercial buildings see pandemic upgrades

‘The demand right now is very high. People are putting their health and safety ahead of cost’

Bank of Montreal, located on Burrard Street in downtown Vancouver. (Google Maps)
Heiltsuk man files human rights complaint against Vancouver police, BMO after bank arrest

Pair remains distraught after employee falsely reports fraud in progress leading to their arrest

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

RCMP Cpl. Cory Lepine pictured at BC Livestock Producers Co. in Kamloops, Nov. 16. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Meet B.C.’s only cowboy cop; a voice for the livestock industry

Cpl. Cory Lepine serves as a bridge between the law and those who make a living off the land

BCHL
BCHL pushes back season start due to provincial health orders

The delay is minimal, just six days, for now. But the league is open to starting up after Christmas

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Long-awaited federal rent subsidy program for businesses hurt by COVID-19 opens today

The new program will cover up to 65 per cent of rent or commercial mortgage interest

Most Read