Santa Fe New Mexican

Message in bottle from Hawaii is found in California river


SANTA ROSA, Calif. — A message in a bottle from Hawaii was discovered floating in a California river after traveling for more than a decade across the Pacific.

Eric McDermott, 30, said he found the message, dated 2006, in April with the names of three siblings, ages 4, 7 and 10, and an Oklahoma street address, the Press Democrat reported Friday.

McDermott was volunteeri­ng to help clean up the Russian River, about 77 miles north of San Francisco, when he spotted the bottle in the water. He spent months searching for the family and finally tracked them down a few miles from where he discovered the note, he said.

“The world works in mysterious ways,” McDermott said. “What are the odds?”

The family was originally from Santa Rosa and returned after living in Oklahoma for a few years.

Brian Bricker and his ex-wife Alicia Bricker were shocked to learn of the discovery. Their children are now 17, 20 and 23.

The bottle likely floated south from Hawaii toward the Philippine­s and Asia before possibly taking a counterclo­ckwise swing through the Gulf of Alaska before heading down the California coast, said John Largier, professor of oceanograp­hy at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Lab.

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