Woman reunited with wedding dress 32 years after dry cleaner mix-up

By Ben Hooper  |  Feb. 12, 2018 at 12:35 PM
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Feb. 12 (UPI) -- A Facebook post about a 32-year-old wedding dress mixup at an Ohio dry cleaner led to an emotional reunion between a woman and her gown.

Ame Bartlebaugh, 25, of Cuyahoga Falls, said she visited her grandmother's house in Willowick to find the wedding dress used by both her mother and her aunt.

Bartlebaugh, who hoped to wear the dress at her own wedding in December of next year, opened the package that the dress had been sealed inside by a dry cleaner in 1985 and made a startling discovery -- it was the wrong dress.

"I am now in search of the owner of this gown. It was dry cleaned in the summer of 1985. It has a hoop skirt that goes underneath and a veil with a flower crown attached," Bartlebaugh wrote in a Facebook post that included photos of the mystery gown.

She said it took less than 24 hours for Facebook users to find the dress' owner.

Brian Havrilla‏ tweeted an emotional video showing his family presenting the dress, which they wrapped, to his mother, Michelle Havrilla, as a late Christmas gift.

"I'm still in shock," Havrilla told the Akron Beacon Journal. "I never thought I'd see it again."

Havrilla said she discovered that her own package contained the wrong dress after it was rescued from a basement flood about five years ago.

Bartlebaugh said her own quest to locate her mother's dress is ongoing, as the box orginally given to Havrilla contained a third dress that didn't belong to either family.

Brian Havrilla tweeted Bartlebaugh's photos in the hopes of helping her family in the same way they helped his.

"The woman who posted the dress on Facebook is getting married in December of next year," Havrilla wrote. "The dry cleaner gave her mother's dress to another person. She's still missing the dress and would like to wear it, or something from it, for her wedding. Internet -- do your thing!"

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