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Local military collector finds, returns 1970s helmet to North Carolina veteran

US Army helmet (veteranscall usa/Flickr)
December 28, 2019

Just a few weeks before Christmas, a military hardware collector from outside of the Dayton-area found and returned an old military helmet that belonged to a veteran living in North Carolina, according to our partners at WFMY 2 in North Carolina.

Rick Gilmore was drafted back in 1972 and stationed in Germany. He was a sophomore at East Carolina University when he was one of the last people drafted from Orange County.

When Gilmore returned home two years later in November 1974, he dropped his helmet off and went back to college.

He didn’t think of the helmet again until a few weeks ago when the collector contacted him, saying he had his old army helmet from the 1970s.

Gilmore asked the collector to send him a picture, which showed his name written in his own handwriting on the helmet’s liner.

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When he asked what he had to do to get his helmet back, the collector said, “send me your address.”

“I literally had tears in my eyes,” he told WFMY 2. “Knowing that somebody would be that kind to send this to me; a total stranger.”

Gilmore plans to keep the helmet as a family heirloom to pass it on from generation to generation.

“It’s divine intervention or something,” he said. “It’s almost like a Christmas miracle to me.”

He told WFMY 2 that he hopes to meet the collector to thank him in person the next time he visits the Dayton area, which he does twice a year.

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© 2019 the Dayton Daily News