Stolen Hockey Cards Returned to Owner 20 Years Later

Stolen Hockey Cards Returned to Owner 20 Years Later

CIThockeycards2p080311 ImageAs first reported by the Sun Journal, a stolen card collection has found its way back to the original owners after 20 years. The story begins on a night in 1991 when a thief broke into a home in Lewiston, Maine. The individual came upon a small safe and was likely disappointed when the strongbox only yielded nine hockey cards. The collection belonged to Steve Theberge and once he realized what the robber took from him, he was “devastated." Although it would be considered a small collection to most, it included autographed cards and paper scraps from Bobby Orr, Bobby Hull and Gordie Howe, among others. The cards represented something very special to Theberge, because they were heroes from his childhood and he had gotten all the signatures in person.

Although he searched for the stolen cards at pawn shops and card shows, he realized that it was unlikely he would ever see the cards again. Years went by, and, against all odds, the cards were eventually reunited with their owner through a random series of events. It turned out that approximately ten years ago, a realtor by the name of Marcel Robert had discovered a set of nine cards in a home that were left behind by the previous residents and put them in a safe. After five years, Marcel Robert eventually gave the cards to his son, Scott, and the cards spent several more years in a safe. Scott, a realtor like his father, was in the middle of helping Jeff Maxim buy a home when the topic of hockey cards came up in their discussions. Scott showed Jeff the cards his father had found and given to him. Jeff was a heating and plumbing contractor and he knew that a buddy of his, who was a plumbing supply dealer would likely be interested based on hockey talks they had in the past. That friend turned out to be Steve Theberge.

Once the story was explained and the connections were discovered, Scott Robert returned the cards to their rightful owner. Theberge was very appreciative to be able to hold a piece of those memories again, saying “Thank god there are two guys out there who saw fit to give them back to me, because they didn't have to."

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Trey Treutel is an Ole Miss grad and a lifelong sports fanatic. He is a huge fan of the NBA and NFL, as well as soccer, college basketball and college football. As a kid, he collected football and basketball cards. As an adult, he started collecting basketball cards again on a whim, and has since expanded to other sports and entertainment options. Find Trey on Twitter at @datreute.

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