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State seeks owners of medals of heroism sitting unclaimed in Salem

Navy insignia found inside a deposit box once owned by a George B. James was sent from an Umpqua Bank in Bandon. (Courtesy/Oregon Department of State Lands)

Tucked away inside a vault within the Oregon Department of State Lands sit several safes. 

Inside these safes rest mementos such old photos and baseball cards, money and coins, jewelry, gold bars, rings and stamp collections.

Even odd things like baby teeth and locks of hair are secured in the state safes. 

The agency put out a call ahead of Veterans Day, coming up Monday, to reunite families with military medals and artifacts that fell to the state’s care.

The agency’s charge is to try to return such items to their owners or heirs where others have failed.

The medals and . . .