(NBC 4):Rebecca Nguyen was sure her wedding dress was safe at her parent’s house.
However, when her parents divorced, the beloved gown somehow wound up among items designated for donation. When Nguyen, of Mission Viejo, realized that her dad was clearing out the house before selling it, she immediately called him.
“And he’s like, ‘There’s nothing left,’ and I was like, ‘Oh, my gosh,'” Nguyen said. “Unfortunately, things were being donated to Goodwill, and my wedding dress was accidentally donated with some of the other stuff.”
But Nguyen wanted to find her wedding dress, which was donated to the Goodwill in Brea.
“We called Goodwill right away, and then they said, ‘Well, unfortunately, we don’t sell wedding dresses at this location.'”
Nguyen’s search efforts included circulating a photo among Goodwill stores.
“They’re helping out,” she said. “All the Goodwill stores have a photo of the dress and an email with my information in it. So we’re doing as much as we can.”
Nguyen is also sharing her story on social media.
“I posted, I don’t know, I wanna say like 30 to 40 Facebook pages. Like every local page I can find, you know, wedding pages, things like that.”
A TikTok about the dress search already has about 30,000 views, she said.
She’s also getting advice from social media users on how to retrieve her dress.
“People are being really amazing and sharing,” she said.
Even though Nguyen knows it is very difficult to find her gown, she is still trying.
“There’s a high likelihood that somebody has the dress already, and I understand that they’re probably in love with it because, I was in love with it, and finding it at a Goodwill is such a score,” she said. “I’m ok with whoever has this wedding dress, like wearing it to their wedding. But, you know, if I could pay them to have it back, that would be, that’s just really all I’m asking for.”
Nguyen married Jesse Sánchez in August 2017. Her dress is one of the most beautiful memories she has of that day.
“I honestly didn’t think I’d be this attached to it,” she said. “But when I was looking for the dress, I had tried on so many dresses, and I just didn’t feel like myself in any of them.
“But then when I found that dress, I put it on, and I just felt like the most beautiful version of myself.”
Fast forward to the wedding.
“I’m walking down to see my husband and he’s a Marine, so he’s pretty stern and like, doesn’t show that much emotion, but I’m coming down the aisle and he was crying,” she said.
She only hopes this will one day be a funny story to tell her kids and grandchildren.
“Oh, I was on TV, and it was this big manhunt and we found the dress.
“I’m pretty heartbroken. I’ll be ok.”