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Family Heirloom From WWII Veteran Turns Out To Be A Live Mini-Bomb

Jeremy Bechen was cleaning the garage of his family’s home on School St. in Whitman, Massachusetts when he found an old family heirloom his grandfather brought back after serving in the Navy in WWII.

“My parents had always told me that this was a dummy – not a real device – and on closer inspection you can see the charge in there,” Bechen said to Boston 25 News. “It was kind of a heart-skip moment. You look down the tail pipe of it and see, ‘Oh, there’s something in there!’”

Bechen, a chemistry major, was concerned the “dummy” wasn’t quite as inert as his family believed. He photographed the small but heavy mini-bomb and delivered the serial number to authorities.

Police arrived with a fire and bomb technician to inspect the family keepsake. Portions of School St. were closed during the inspection. “It was wild. It was a huge production,” Bechen said. “The police were pretty excited. I mean, it’s Whitman. When’s the last time you’ve had some incident like this?” After taking a closer look, experts confirmed the bomb was no dud.

“It is not uncommon for older veterans to have war souvenirs and for relatives to find them when the veteran passes away or moves for care in old age,” Jennifer Mieth, public information officer for the State Fire Marshal’s Office, told Boston 25 in an email. “In this case the souvenir was an old practice bomb that was determined to be live.”

“The correct thing to do is contact local law enforcement who will work with the State Police bomb squad to remove the item,” she continued. “In most cases the items are inert but they must be treated as if they are live until we can be sure they are not.”

Watch the video below for more information about the live bomb that sat in a veteran’s garage for nearly 8 decades.

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h/t Nicer Days

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