Story Summary

Sender of 25-year-old message in a bottle found

Jen Dettinger of Windsor, York County found the bottle Monday while walking along the Susquehanna River with  her family. Bambi Caffery was just six years old when she cast the bottle out on the river in New York state 25 years ago.

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Local News
04/19/13

Sender of 25-year-old message in a bottle found

After some digging on the internet, FOX43’s Trang Do was able to find the woman who cast out a message in a bottle on the Susquehanna River some 25 years ago.

Jen Dettinger of Windsor, York County found the bottle Monday, while walking along the Susquehanna River with her family in Lower Windsor Township.

Dettinger contacted FOX43 in the hopes of finding the person, who signed her name “Bambi Caffery” in the letter.

After calling several numbers that were wrong, we found a phone number for Bambi Caffery’s mother in Myrtle Beach, SC and called it. Minutes later, Caffery called back, which led to a Skype interview from her home in South Carolina Friday.

“I was surprised and I don’t really remember the bottle and I was like what did I write?” Caffery said.

The letter was dated January 7, 1988. Caffery was six years old at the time and in the first grade.

She was surprised to hear that the bottle made it all the way from Sidney, NY, where she lived at the time, to southern Pennsylvania.

“I wasn’t quite sure where York, Pennsylvania was. So I looked on the map and I was like wow, that’s on the other side of the state,” Caffery said. “The Susquehanna does go through Sidney, NY, so that makes sense.”

Caffery is eager to speak with Dettinger about how she came across the bottle and the chances of this bottle bringing them together.

“They’ve had movies about messages in a bottle and I do think it’s interesting that she has a daughter the same age as my son and I think, it looks like maybe we’re around the same age,” she said.  “Who knows why she found it? We might become life-long friends after this.”

Dettinger said she’s just as excited to connect with Caffery and hopes to mail her the letter so she has it back in her possession.

A Windsor, York County woman who found a 25-year-old message in a bottle along the Susquehanna River  is determined to find the person who sent it.

Jen Dettinger and her fiance Dustin Koontz were taking a walk along the Susquehanna River with their daughter Monday when they noticed an interesting-looking glass bottle.

“I was just joking and told him, ‘Hey babe, here’s a message in a bottle!'” Dettinger said.  “And he said, ‘no way!'”

The letter inside was dated January 7, 1988 and read in part:

“To the finder of this bottle, if you want to know why I did this, my math teacher wanted me to try it [...]  Call on April 28, 1988 [...] Your friend, Bambi Caffery.”

“My first thought was, is like, where, how far away, where did she throw it in at?” Koontz said.

FOX43 found several different phone numbers for a Bambi Caffery in South Carolina, but when Dettinger called them, she didn’t have any luck. Still, she’s going to keep trying.

“It is pretty neat,” Dettinger said. “I don’t know. I think she would like to be told that it was found. I would.”

Internet searches for Bambi Caffery show she lived in Binghamton, NY at some point.

Recent addresses we found for her are in the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina area.

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