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Jay Dortzbach

Man finds deleted photo files, returns pictures to woman

By Devon Dolan  |  Posted Sep 23rd, 2013 @ 10:33pm

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SALT LAKE CITY — When a woman brought in her hard drive for maintenance, she said the business accidentally deleted everything including 40 years worth of photos. Several years later, she was surprised to learn the documents weren't lost.

Marie Hedegus had stored more than 10,000 photos she took from 1970 to 2010 on her computer. She also stored her tax records and journals on her hard drive. After scanning each document, she threw them away. After taking her computer to a store for maintenance, she was told that the files had been deleted through an error, and they were irretrievable.

Three years later, she received a phone call.

"She was on a walk so she was out of breath and didn't understand what I was trying to tell her," said Sam Rimmasch.

Rimmasch said he was looking for a document on his computer when he found an unrecognizable folder. Inside, he found 46 gigs of photos.

"Definitely wasn't anyone I knew," Rimmasch said.

Rimmasch said he continued to search through the photos until he found a rebate form. On the form, he found Hedegus's name. He then searched for the name on Facebook. He found a profile with a picture that matched that file.

"It was crazy, because I was out here doing my morning walk and then the phone rings," Hedegus said.

Rimmasch and Hedegus met up and one by one, the photos and documents were uploaded back onto Hedegus hard drive.

"I always go out of my way to help people, so they always say it always comes back," Hedegus said.

Rimmasch said the files were stored on the computer after his office took one of the work computers to the same store Hedegus did. Somehow the company placed Hedegus's backup hard drive on Rimmasch's computer.


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