Teenager stumbles on stolen bag

Teenager Jarrah Edge found Pam Cuthbertson’s stolen backpack while he was fishing in Barongarook Creek.

COLAC’s Pam Cuthbertson thought she would never see her backpack again after thieves stole it in April.

But Colac teenager Jarrah Edge literally stumbled across the bag more than seven months after it went missing from Mrs Cuthbertson’s car at her Colac home.

Mrs Cuthbertson had given up after searching for the bag since April to no avail, which included taking out an advertisement in the Colac Herald offering a reward for its whereabouts.

Jarrah, 15, was fishing at Barongarook Creek in Colac when he kicked something beneath the water’s surface.

“It had a brick in it – I picked it up and it was really green,” Jarrah said.

“I got everything out and put it in a pink bag that wasn’t wrecked and brought it home and dried it out,” he said.

“I just looked at what was in it and she had a purse so I looked at her card to see what she looked like and then I found her phone number in the glasses case – then I rang her.

“She said ‘my backpack!’ in a happy way.”

Mrs Cuthbertson said her “whole life” was in her backpack and she had replaced all her lost items since it was stolen.

But she said she was “thrilled to bits” Jarrah had taken the initiative to come forward when he found it, and she had given him a “small reward”.

“I was delighted to be able to put closure to whatever happened to my backpack – I always wondered where the hell it was,” Mrs Cuthbertson said.

“So it was very good of him, I want Jarrah to be recognised – he took a bit of initiative and didn’t just toss it back,” she said.

“He didn’t want the reward but I told him ‘go on take it, it’s Christmas’.”

Mrs Cuthbertson said the thieves stole $350 but had left everything else, including her phone, glasses, licences, and blood-type card.

“I didn’t think I’d ever see it again,” Mrs Cuthbertson said.

“I was thrilled to bits and Jarrah is a wonderful lad – he has obviously been brought up very well,” she said.

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