Three years ago, with an uncertain future, Brittanie Penrose tossed a message sealed in a bottle into the Pacific Ocean. Little did she know that the bottle would make its way 6,200 miles across the Pacific Ocean.
At the time the letter was written, Brittanie was battling brain cancer at the age of 24. She said that she had been on a date with her boyfriend that night, and he encouraged her to write it.
“I just described me and what I’m doing, and at the time I was a phlebotomist and was fighting cancer,” Penrose said.
The letter was found while students from George Washington High School were cleaning one of Guam’s southern beaches. 14-year-old student, Javier Sanchez, made the discovery and cracked open the bottle where he found two pieces of paper. One letter was written by Penrose, the other her boyfriend, at the time, Aaron Lanari.
Sanchez gave the letter to his science teacher, Linda Tatreau, who submitted a video of her reading the letter to one of Guam’s newspapers. They were later able to get in touch with Penrose to tell her that her letter had been found.
Penrose said that she was completely shocked when she heard that someone had found her letter. “I was just in total shock,” Penrose said. “I was like, ‘Is this real? This can’t be happening.'” Penrose is now 27-years-old and is free of cancer.
Lanari says that he also can’t believe that the bottle traveled such a long distance. “I’m stoked that this turned out to be such a happy event for so many people,” Lanari said. “I’m glad to be a part of it.”
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