May 13, 2013 10:13 AM by Samantha Ptashkin

TIA lost and found tale featured in USA Today

TUCSON- There's an old saying, "bad news travels fast".

But it's one simple act of kindness at Tucson International Airport that caught the attention of a travel writer from USA Today and now the good news is traveling far beyond Southern Arizona.

In April writer Kitty Bean Yancey was leaving TIA to head back home to Washington, DC. She somehow misplaced her favorite travel jacket that she bought in Paris and she never thought she would see it again. "What are the chances of you getting something back when you lose it in a busy airport?" Yancey told News 4 Tucson by phone.

But one call to TIA's Lost and Found and Yancey's jacket was not only retrieved by TIA Police, but the woman on the other line, Julie Woodall, told Yancey TIA would mail it to her for free. "I said really? I'm happy to pay you and she said no," Yancey says. "So $6.60 later, courtesy of Tucson International, I got my jacket. It's just pretty unbelievable."

It's a big compliment considering Yancey has been to her fair share of airports. But Woodall says it's just the norm at TIA.

Every year the airport finds about 1,200 lost items and usually half of them are returned to their rightful owners at no cost, unless they want the item shipped overnight. "It's exciting," Woodall says. "We really like to return stuff to people."

Woodall says the most common lost items are jackets, cell phones and canes. They get about five to six calls a week from people wondering if their item was found.

Yancey was so impressed, she ended up writing an article about TIA's service in USA Today. "I don't even think it's normal for other airports to answer the phone," Woodall says with a smile.

It's a reminder that even though travel these days can be cold and impersonal, there are still people and places where you can find that human connection.

To read Yancey's article head to:



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