Muumuu enthusiast finds family treasure at Salvation Army

A woman went found a dress at a thrift store with a surprising family connection.

Shannon Hiramoto from Kauai, Hawaii was met with quite the surprise on a recent shopping adventure at Salvation Army. Always on the hunt for for vintage versions of the muumuu, she came across a ‘mini’ dress (the Hawaiian-style dress is usually long) in a pink and purple print that caught her eye. Hiramoto, self-proclaimed muumuu enthusiast according to Khon2, knew the piece was special — but had no idea how extraordinary it truly was until she dug a little deeper.

Shannon Hiramoto made a regular trip to Salvation Army, not expecting what she’d find. (Photo: Instagram/machinemachine)

When I looked at the tag, it said Liberty House, then it also had handwritten on it ‘Kamei,'” she explained to the local news channel, “and it blew my mind, because that’s my great-grandmother’s name, her last name.”

Without a second thought, Hiramoto took the muumuu home, thinking that the coincidence was too crazy to overlook. But it wasn’t until some time later that she started to feel as though she’d actually seen the dress before. “I just knew that she always liked to wear muumuu that had pink or purple or red,” Hiramoto said of her great-grandmother, “and it seemed familiar in this memory way.” So she called up her mother to start looking through family photo albums.

The results were unfruitful at first, until just a few days later.

“My mom texts me a photo and it’s this,” Hiramoto said pointing to the muumuu she had on, “and it’s [my great-grandmother], and it’s a full-body shot and I was just so excited.”

But the fateful discovery went even further when they deciphered the location of the photo as the United Church of Christ in Hanapepe. “What’s really special about it is she’s there,” Hiramoto said. “Her ashes, her remains are in the back of the church there, so it was like visiting her again.”

Hiramoto went to re-visit her great-grandmother, returning to that same church in the same muumuu to take the same picture. And although Hiramoto has no idea where the muumuu has been in the five years since her great-grandmother’s passing, she’s taking full control of where it’ll go next, starting with her own daughter.

It’s magic,” Hiramoto said. “I think it’s just her way of telling me I’m on the right track.”

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