HERMANN, Mo- At first glance, 12-year-old Jimmy Humphrey might’ve thought the old bottle he pulled from the banks of the Gasconade River was trash. It only took a little more investigating to learn he’d struck treasure.

Inside the bottle, was a note. One written 36 years and 200 miles ago by then-six-year-old John Thomas of Waynesville.

“When we opened it, it made this hissing sound,” Humphrey told reporters. “Like air escaping because the seal was still on it.”

The only person more surprised than Jimmy, was now-adult John Thomas.

“I couldn’t actually believe that it survived that long,” he told us. “You know as a child when you do something of that gravity you don’t feel like your going to deal with that in the future and you don’t understand what you’re doing there. But after 36 years, it’s amazing. Congratulations to him.”

This story will air on KOLR10 news @ 5p.m.