Newport News man stumbles upon military mystery

Posted at 11:40 PM, May 20, 2014
and last updated 2014-05-22 06:13:42-04

Newport News, Va. - Paul Piepho was walking home from work on J. Clyde Morris Blvd. in Newport News when he spotted a piece of the past tucked between blades of grass.

"Picked it up and I said 'Wow this is old,'" said Piepho.  "That was definitely a treasure find right there."

Piepho found an old wallet sized picture of a man dressed in his army uniform.  He called NewsChannel 3 to help him find whoever lost it.

"Well I thought it might have been somebody's dad, brother, grandfather," said Piepho.  "Somebody that would like to have it back."

A social security number was written on the back of the picture, and that information led NewsChannel 3 to an obituary for Mark J. Sershon.  The funeral home put us in touch with Sershon's widow in Illinois.

"I appreciate this person Paul for finding this," said Paula Sershon, who explained that her husband's nephew Christopher lives in Newport News and must have lost the picture.

"I checked my wallet, and my picture was missing," said Christopher Sershon, who did not realize he lost his uncle's picture until he got the call from his aunt.  "It was pretty important, especially because he just passed."

Christopher said the picture must have fallen out of his wallet when he stopped to help an elderly woman whose car had broken down in the intersection.

"I was just trying to get over there as quickly as possible.  I wasn't really concerned about if anything fell out of my wallet," said Christopher.  "I was just happy someone was able to find it.  It's not often that you lose something and someone finds it and goes through all the trouble to get it back to you."