Lucy Hamer's birthday card, from her sister-in-law, contained good wishes and a $50 bill. It was inadvertently thrown away, unopened, after it arrived in a box with items for her son, the Medina Gazette reported Monday.
Josh Kerns, a Medina sanitation worker, found the card in Hamer's trash can.
"It was just stuck in there," he said of the purple envelope. "It wasn't open, and it looked important."
Kerns and supervisor Bob Depew later open the envelope, decided it was important, and drove to Hamer's home to deliver it.
Hamer was grateful, and impressed the sanitation workers took the time to return the envelope, adding it may have served to avoid any animosity between herself and her sister-in-law.
"She would have wondering why I didn't thank her for the card, and I might have been wondering why she didn't send one," Hamer said. "It could have been awkward."