Grenade found in closet at apartment

A maintenance worker at a Columbus retirement community came across an unusual find when cleaning out a World War II veteran’s apartment.

Tossed in a box, in an assisted-living apartment closet, the worker Monday morning found what was believed to be a live “pineapple style” hand grenade, a souvenir from the veteran’s service at Iwo Jima, said Sgt. Matt Harris, Columbus Police spokesman.

The retirement community staff called the police department, which sent out its hazardous devices unit, commonly known as the bomb squad, Harris said.

“They did the right thing by giving us a call,” he said.

A member of the bomb squad safely removed the estimated 65-year-old grenade from the box, which also contained miscellaneous papers, pens and other “junk drawer” kinds of items that belonged to the deceased veteran, Harris said.

Police are testing the device to determine if the grenade is still capable of exploding, Harris said, adding investigators described it as being in good condition.

The bomb squad checked through the veteran’s other property to make sure there were no other war souvenirs among his possessions.

The veteran’s family members told police they had no idea he had the grenade among his possessions, Harris said.

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Julie McClure is assistant managing editor of The Republic. She can be reached at jmcclure@therepublic.com or (812) 379-5631.