After almost seven years a camera and its contents have been returned to their owner, thanks to a very identifiable T-shirt.
UK holiday-maker Rory Fitzgerald spotted the camera while on a diving trip to Australia. He retrieved the camera from the bottom of Sydney’s Balmoral Bay and 3.5GB of photos on a trip in 2015 and had been looking for its owner ever since.
The camera itself was damaged beyond repair but, to his surprise, the memory card contained a treasure trove of clues.
In July 2015 Fitzgerald posted a photo from the mystery camera to Facebook.
“This may be a long shot, but I am trying to reunite someone with a lost memory card which I found while visiting Australia …” he wrote.
Among the clues at his disposal were images of a Singaporean driving license belonging to Lee Lisheng, Lydon and a man in a race T-shirt from the Marina 21k race in Singapore.
He thought it was all in vain until in 2020, he received a message out of the blue from someone claiming to be its owner.
Apparently Lydon stumbled across the post when he was Googling his name, years after the discovery, when the lost camera was a distant memory.
“Well, Facebook did its stuff!” wrote the diver last Friday, in a very late update to the post.
Lydon and Fitzgerald finally met this week after he was visiting the UK for a friend’s wedding.
“Today, I met with and reunited Lyndon Lee with his long lost (around 3.5Gb) photo memories.”
It turns out the man in the T-shirt was in fact a not Lydon but a friend, he instantly recognized the pictures and the memories of the trip to Australia came flooding back.”
Fitzgerald, who is a long distance swimmer, travels the world for competitions and events. He said the adventure of the memory card was a lesson that what goes on social media stays on social media forever – and sometimes that’s not a bad thing.
He and his partner have been making friends by returning objects he finds under water for years.
“I’ve been swimming across the globe and you find a lot of things, most often golf balls,” he told the BBC.
“I like to do the right thing and return objects to where they belong,”
He can’t wait to make the return trip to Singapore, he said.
This article originally appeared on the New Zealand Herald and has been republished with permission.