Girl’s ‘Letter to Heaven’ addressed to dad sails more than 400 miles

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AUBURN, Calif. -- A high school girl sent a letter to heaven and her words are touching the hearts of people 400 miles away in northern California. The girl from Whittier, Calif. wrote the letter to her late father on a balloon and let it sail away.

The balloon eventually made it to a restaurant's parking lot in Auburn. KOVR reports that a customer was leaving the restaurant and spotted it crumpled up on the ground. He asked an employee for a trash can, but the restaurant owner intervened and realized it wasn’t trash upon further review.

"(The balloon said) Happy birthday, dad. I will always be your little girl dad, don't forget that I miss you," restaurant owner Lisa Swisley said.

"It came over 400 miles. It's a long way, and a lot of empty space in between. And how it got here, I don't know."

Swisley began collecting donations and is now putting together a care package filled with messages of support from people in the community. She hopes to send it to the girl this weekend after seeing her name on the balloon and finding her on Facebook.