CANTON, Ga. - A Canton family is on a sort of reverse treasure hunt -- they found a hidden box of treasure and now want to find the rightful owners.
While he was at work, his wife, Michelle, walked Channel 2’s Jeff Dore through the mystery.
“This is the electrical panel and he needed to get inside, so he pulled this panel off,” Michelle said.
Wedged behind the panel, he found a plastic box. Inside, he found the heirlooms of a man's life.
“Yeah, there's a bunch in here. Oh, my gosh. These look like buttons. I would think the family would want this and this at the very least back,” Michelle said.
The couple found clues about the owner.
“There was also the expert pistol shot from the United States Navy, that's how we knew he was in the Navy,” Michelle said.
Silver star-like lapel emblems indicate that he was a commander in the Navy.
More clues told the couple he served during World War II. After the war, a medal revealed, the owner had a distinguished engineering career.
“This is the Bliss Medal from 1963. The Bliss Medal is awarded to engineers,” Michelle said.
Michelle turned the medal over to reveal his name – Dr. Edwin D. Harrison.
Harrison went on to become the sixth president of Georgia Tech. He desegregated Tech in the 1960s without any court order.
He died in 2001, leaving tiny memorabilia of a big life in a small hidden box.
The Gunters are trying to track down the heirs of Harrison and they hope this story will help.