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Tornado carries vintage family picture 130 miles

A woman found the picture on her windshield in Indiana Saturday and used Twitter to locate the family who lost it in Dawson Springs, Kentucky.

NEW ALBANY, Ind. — An incredible story of a family heirloom lost, then found, after this weekend's tornadoes.

Katie Posten watched the coverage of Friday's violent tornadoes from her New Albany home. 

"I was listening to a bunch of meteorologists say, 'It's still going, it's still going,'" Posten said.

She woke up the next morning, walked out to her car and found what looked like a note stuck to her window. 

"Peeled it off the car. It was soaking wet and turned it over and immediately thought, 'Oh my goodness,'" Posten said.

It was a photo that was nearly 80 years old. 

"I was really emotional and overwhelmed when I originally found the photo because it was like knowing almost instantly this had to have come from someone's home that had been destroyed," Posten said.

She posted the picture on Twitter and Facebook. 

"This is a treasure. This is a piece of treasure that needs to be returned and regardless of what the outcome was for that family overnight, someone needs this back, and the internet loves to solve mysteries. So, I'm going to let the internet do what the internet does," Posten said.

The post quickly gained some traction. Just two hours later, she was connected with a member of the Swatzell family in Dawson Springs, Kentucky, 130 miles away.

"We had mutual friends who knew a few people with that last name. I'm just going to tag them, and one of the people was Cole," Posten said.

The woman in the picture, Gertie Swatzell, is Cole Swatzell's great-grandmother. 

"It's like small potatoes given just the logistics of what they're having to deal with," Posten said. "He [Cole] was grateful that we found them and pretty amazed that it traveled that far and stayed intact."

Posten is doing the leg work to get the photo back to his family once things calm down.

Since her good deed, others are using her post and the power of social media to connect more lost belongings with their rightful owner. 

"At the end of the day, this photo is being returned to the family, but it also made a lot of other people realize, 'I can do social media for the same thing. There's no reason I can't do that,'" Posten said.

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