People Are Sharing The Strange Belongings They Found After A Loved One's Death And Wow, We All Have Secrets

    "The whole thing was highly radioactive."

    Recently, Reddit user u/OmegaMasterFlex asked people to share the strangest and most unexpected thing they found while going through the belongings of someone who'd passed away. Here's what people said:

    Responses have been edited for length and clarity.

    1. "So here's a story from when my dad passed away a few years ago. While looking through a few old manila envelopes, a bag of blue gems fell out, along with an old letter from the bank in response to one my dad had sent in the early '80s."

    "To cut a long story short, during his gap year in New Zealand, he stopped off in Bali and got convinced to buy some 'sapphires' he could sell for a tidy profit back in the U.K. He was very scam aware, so why he fell for this, we don't know.

    On his return, he visited a jeweler, who told him that they're fake and he's happy to just take them off his hands. Cue Dad's letters to the bank seeking help recovering the money he spent, to no avail. He just seems to have accepted he got played and forgot about it.

    We as a family decided that even as fakes they would make some nice jewelry, so we sent them to a friend to fashion into a few earrings and cufflinks. This is the crazy part: Turns out they are in fact real sapphires and it was the old jeweler trying to scam him all along!"



    2. "A box labeled 'Pens That Don’t Work,' full of pens that didn’t work. I guess if Pop Pop ever needed a pen that didn’t work, he would know right where to find one."


    3. "My grandpa passed when I was in my thirties. A few years later, my grandma was convinced to sell the house. While helping her pack, I had a vague memory that when I was about 7, he showed me a secret compartment he had built into a desk, and there was a coffee can full of coins. At that point I thought it was probably my imagination but figured I might as well check just to be sure...I ended up finding three coffee cans. We almost gave the desk away for free!"


    4. "Some old farmer died in the village I grew up in. When cleaning out his farm, they found a fully functional and maintained anti-tank gun. Plus ammo."


    5. "My dad and my uncle were tasked with cleaning out my great-grandma's house when she moved into an assisted living facility. My uncle gestured to me and said, 'I know you're interested in family history, so I was thinking you'd like this!' and handed me an old bottle. Inside is what looked like a small grey pebble that had partially dissolved into dust. It was labelled 'John's Appendix. 1907.' It turns out that my great-granddad was one of the first British recipients of an appendectomy when he was young, and they let him keep the appendix."


    6. "He had a list of 100 names, 87 of which were crossed off with red ink. To this day, we don't know how he was connected to them or what it meant."


    7. "We cleaned my grandpa's house when he died. You know what we found all over the place? ONIONS. Raw onions everywhere. In the bathroom, upstairs, next to the cleaning supplies. No, my grandpa was not Shrek."


    8. "We found out my grandfather was an ambulance driver and medic in Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge. We found his dog tags, orders, and pictures. He had always claimed he was in the army but stayed in California. He never talked to anyone about it, not his wife, his brothers, or his children. When he passed away in '92, two old vets showed up and talked about him saving their lives."


    9. "This is one from the lighter side. When I was growing up, my grandfather was never into sports. He encouraged us to play and even took us to a handful of pro games, but he barely enjoyed it himself. He always said that following pro sports was nice for kids, but there's something wrong with adults who do it. When he died, my sister and me found his secret stash..."

    "...It was a couple of old trunks, full of Boston Braves memorabilia. There were game jerseys and T-shirts, signed bubblegum cards, souvenir bats and hats, and at least 100 ticket stubs.

    Apparently he was a hardcore, President-of-the-Boston-Braves-fan-club level aficionado. When the Braves left Boston in 1952, it broke his sports fan heart in a way that he never recovered from.

    Not the most tragic tale and it's even a bit amusing. But it's kind of sad, too. Being a Braves fan was his thing; it was his guilty pleasure, his passion, and apparently part of his identity. Then they left and he was never the same."


    Babe Ruth playing for the Boston braves

    10. "When my grandmother died, we were going through her closets and found a marriage license for my grandfather and another woman, dated six months before he married my grandmother. Apparently, he got jilted and Mema caught him on the rebound. My mom knew the woman, and had never heard about a relationship between her and Granddaddy."


    11. "My grandma was a school nurse but had been retired for about 10 years or so at the time of her death. As we were clearing out her old office, we found index cards with dead lice on them, labeled with which kind they were. We were all so grossed out."


    12. "A hand-knitted penis cozy. Apparently these were a knitting fad in the 1940s, and wives would knit them as gag gifts to send to their husbands who were away at war. They go by many names, of which 'Willy Warmer' is probably my favorite. It's just weird to think of my sweet elderly aunt as having a sense of humor that includes penis jokes, but everyone was young and immature once."


    13. "Notes on how to summon demons, some sinister books about satanic rituals, and a collection of weird shit (daggers, chunks of hair, some vials with powder). My grandparents were incredibly devout Christians, so it was a pretty creepy find. My aunt ended up throwing it all out."


    14. "Not me, a family friend. They found a jar of sand labeled 'fused sand from first nuclear bomb test, Nevada' when the family patriarch died. They called up the local university and someone came out with full radiation suit and Geiger counter. The whole thing was highly radioactive."


    15. "My Dad passed away last year. In the basement, in a back corner, we found a huge garbage bag. It contained every card he had ever received as an adult. There were cards going back fifty years. Even if they were just simple Hallmarks signed by someone. No one knew he had kept them all."


    16. And finally: "When my dad died, my sister and I went to his apartment with my grandmother. While I was flipping through records and such, Grandma came out of the bedroom with what was very clearly a pot plant. She said she didn't know what it was and asked if I wanted it. When I eagerly accepted, her suspicions were confirmed and she disposed of it."


    Have you ever found something strange or unexpected while going through someone's estate? Let us know in the comments!