Barberton woman finds 1930’s medal for fallen NYPD officer in thrift store

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BARBERTON, OH - A Summit County woman's obsession with the thrift store is now helping the family of a fallen officer from a department on the other side of the country.

"Today is 50 cent day, got to eat and run," said Lori Kline, rushing to eat a snack before dashing off to the store.

Speaking of the thrift store, you could say Kline's home is a bit like one.

"Believe it or not this is chaotic organization," explained Kline standing in a small room surrounded on three sides with boxes and bags piled to the ceiling.

At The Village Discount Outlet, Lori made the discovery of a lifetime inside a $4 dollar bag of mixed jewelry.

"It's not just a medal to me. This is him. I mean he died and his wife got this medal," said Kline clutching her newly prized possession.

Nearly 500 miles away from home, Lori found a NYPD For Valor medal for Patrolman John Morrissey. According to the Officer Down NYPD memorial website, Morrissey, a WWI U.S. Navy Veteran, was killed in the line of duty in 1934.

"It's going to be like saying goodbye to a dear friend. I mean he's a part of my life now," said Kline, who plans to hand over the medal to NYPD next month. "...I have to give it back. I mean, I can sleep at night you know what I mean? It's a sigh of relief a big load off my chest. It's home."

NYPD confirmed with Fox 8 that two representatives will be traveling to Barberton to receive the medal. It will be reunited with Patrolman Morrissey's surviving family.

Until then, for Lori, the hunt continues to find the next precious medal and maybe a story to go with it.

"You never know what you will find in these bags, very unique items," said Kline digging through jewelry as she chuckled. "The key to my heart."

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