Camera lost at sea for two years reunited with its owner after Facebook post

camera lost at sea reunited with owner case
The barnacle-covered camera case. Park Lee

University student Serina Tsubakihara liked to scuba dive with her Canon PowerShot G12 camera, taking it deep under the surface of the ocean to capture sea life around her native Japan.

But two years ago, when she was diving off the coast of Ishigaki in Okinawa, the camera slipped out of her hands and disappeared from sight. Disappointed, she assumed it was lost forever and did her best to put the unfortunate incident behind her.

So imagine Serina’s surprise when a friend contacted her earlier this month to say that some of her photos from that very dive had shown up on Facebook.

She soon learned that her camera, which had been sealed safely inside a waterproof case, had drifted all the way to Taiwan, some 150 miles from where she dropped it, the BBC reported.

蘇澳岳明國小五年級小朋友,在海邊撿到的潛水相機機殼外部,2018.03.27遺失主人,請與我們聯絡!parkgood@gmail.com

Posted by Park Lee on Monday, March 26, 2018

Just recently, a group of Taiwanese schoolchildren on a day out to clean a beach came across what at first sight appeared to be a small rock covered in barnacles. Upon further inspection, they realized it was a case with a camera inside, so they opened it up to take a closer look.

The camera looked to be in perfect shape and, after some deliberation, the class decided to inspect the photos on the memory card in the hope of finding some clues as to the identity of the owner.

They worked out that some of the photos had been taken in Japan, so they posted a few of them on Facebook together with messages in both Japanese and Chinese.

大海飄來的相機,有可能找到主人嗎?今天岳明國小全校總動員,一起到蘇澳港邊里海邊(無尾港海灘)撿拾垃圾淨灘,結果我們班男生,發現一台已經長滿貝殼(藤壺)青苔的防水相機,大家先是好奇可以撿到這樣的東西,後來竟然把外殼打開,裡面還藏有一台可以…

Posted by Park Lee on Monday, March 26, 2018

In the space of just 24 hours, the post received more than 10,000 shares, with a friend of Serina being one of those who happened to see the images in her feed. She contacted Serina, who confirmed they were her photos.

The delighted university student will head to Taiwan in the coming months to thank the class for their efforts and to collect the Canon camera that she was certain she’d never see again.

“I’m so lucky and happy to have this miracle opportunity to feel kindness of people in my life,” Serina told the BBC.

The remarkable story is the latest of many such tales where people have been reunited with their long-lost cameras. Earlier this year we heard about how a young British lad received an action camera that he’d lost in the sea several months earlier, while in Canada another guy got his Lumix camera back after the device had spent two years under water. The device was a total wreck because it hadn’t been inside a case, but incredibly the memory card still worked, giving the diver that found it a chance to trace its owner.

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