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Serendipity, Captured in Family Snapshots

On Monday, a call was placed, and a meeting arranged in the lobby of the police administration building in Alexandria.

"Hello, Liz," said Patricia Morningstar, calmly and appreciatively, walking in yesterday. "I can't believe it."

Sgt. Liz Magyar, right, was an Alexandria Police Department rookie in 1998 when someone handed her Patricia Morningstar's photo album. Magyar kept it, eventually tracked down Morningstar and returned the album. (Gerald Martineau -- The Washington Post)

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She gave Magyar and Bertsch two gold boxes of Godiva chocolate. Then, seeing the yellow album on the coffee table, she said, "There it is."

She opened it to the first photo.

"This is my dad," she said of the man in the pinstripe suit. "And that's me," she said of the baby in white. "May 6, I was born."

She started to cry.

"I just remember the way he used to look at me when I was little," she said.

Patricia Morningstar is 58 now. She lives in Falls Church. She said she wasn't sure what finding the photo album meant, but that she's lost and found things so many times in her life that it must mean something.

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