YORK, Maine — A Massachusetts man has paid off a $3 Maine parking ticket from Long Sands Beach — nearly 42 years after it was issued.
Gary Urgonski mailed a letter, the ticket from July 28, 1978, and a $4 check — with an additional $1 late fee — to the York Police Department, the Portsmouth Herald reported.
The letter read in part, “I hope I can now safely travel through the state of Maine without always looking in my rearview mirror.”
Urgonski — who lived in Newton at the time but now lives in another Massachusetts town, South Dennis — said he’s sure he deserved the ticket and intended to pay it, but forgot about it over the years, according to seacoastonline.com.
Instead, Urgonski said he used it as a bookmark, according to seacoastonline.com. Added Urgonski’s wife, Carolyn Duch: “It was in a book, but then it went to the drawer in our kitchen where we keep our pens and pads, and it would fall out periodically, and we would have a chuckle. We always said one day we were going to pay it.”
York police were baffled, and then amazed, when they first saw the ticket.
“We had to do an immediate double take on the date, thinking it was 2018 on the ticket,” York Police Lt. John Lizanecz told the Herald. “Upon closer examination of the ticket itself, the number didn’t correlate to anything we have now. Then we realized it was from 1978, and not 2018.”
“It was just amazing, pretty comical,” he said.
Lizanecz called Urgonski to confirm that the department received the check, but there are no plans to cash it. Instead, Urgonski said the check will be framed and mounted on a wall in the department.