LEWISTON — It was just before Christmas when Evan Lavoie came upon the urn. 

This urn was found last month at a Lewiston bottle redemption center, and an effort is being made to find the owner. Kristen Doucette

A small, egg-shaped container, the urn is sealed at the top and when it is lightly shaken, it is clear there are cremains inside. 

The urn is black and covered with the images of birds in flight. There’s a tag on the bottom indicating only that the item was made in India.

The item came into Lavoie’s hands Dec. 23 when he was going through a bag of returnable bottles at the redemption center for which he works. 

“Some homeless people had it in their bags,” Lavoie said Wednesday. “I’m assuming it was picked up from a dumpster.” 

The people who brought the urn into the RC Redemption on Lisbon Street had no interest in keeping it and so Lavoie took possession of it in hopes of getting it back into the right hands. 


“I just want to get it back to where it belongs,” he said. “It’s what I’d want if I lost mine.” 

An urn found last month at a Lewiston bottle redemption center has a tag on the bottom indicating it was made in India.  Submitted photo

When Lavoie found the urn, he promptly posted a photo of it on social media. Although there was some interest in the find — the post was shared by nearly three dozen people — there were no takers. 

Lavoie kept the urn close and waited for someone to claim it. He waited and waited some more. 

On Wednesday, he made another post in the popular Lewiston Rocks Facebook group. He listed his personal phone number in hopes of hearing from someone with knowledge of the urn. 

This time, there was even more interest in the matter. Several people weighed in and suggested that if Lavoie were to open the urn, he might find identifying information inside. 

Understandably, he is reluctant to do so. 


“I will not open it,” he said. “That’s very disrespectful.” 

By the middle of the day Wednesday, Lavoie’s latest post had been shared more than 600 times and dozens of people were weighing in with their thoughts. 

Some believe the size of the urn suggests it is the remains of a baby. Others point out that cremains are often split into several small batches which can be shared with family members. 

But no one really knows. 

One woman offered to take the urn to a funeral home where her daughter was cremated. That woman, Kristen Doucette, brought the container to Pinette, Dillingham & Lynch Funeral home in Lewiston and showed it to a worker there.  

“She examined it and unfortunately was not able to open it,” Doucette wrote in an update on her own Facebook page. “The top typically screws open but this particular one is super glued shut. She did confirm there are remains inside and it is just a keepsake urn — more than likely a small amount of someone’s loved one. Had this urn been full size, there would have been a metal plate inside with identifying information, which unfortunately is not the case here.” 


Doucette returned the urn to RC Redemption Center in Lewiston where the search for the rightful owner was continuing on Wednesday. Meanwhile, she has also reached out to a homeless advocate in Lewiston who will likewise spread the word about the wayward urn in hopes of generating information.

Doucette, like Lavoie, really wants that urn to find its way back to its rightful owner.

“I haven’t stopped thinking about this since I came across the original post,” Doucette said Wednesday.

If all else fails, at least one person has offered to take the urn and place it with the remains of her own family. 

“They wouldn’t mind someone joining them,” the woman wrote. “I just don’t want to see it thrown out.” 

Anyone with information may reach out to RC Redemption Center at  207-784-3959.

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