By Peter D'Oench

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – It was a startling sight for a Miami homeowner when he came across old military gear while digging in his backyard Wednesday.

digging Historic Find For SW Miami Dade Man Digging In Backyard

A homeowner digging a hole in his backyard found something quite unexpected – military items (Source: CBS4)

The Miami-Dade Police Department’s bomb squad was called to the home, along with a team from the nearby Homestead Air Reserve Base, near SW 283rd Street and 128th Avenue. Fortunately, no explosive items were found.

Instead, the hole in the ground contained parachutes, helmets and other military stuff dating back to the 1960s.

“This is unbelievable. I have never seen anything like that,” said homeowner Emilio Doreste.

Now his backyard is filled with these remnants of the past. They were discovered by workers as they dug a hole for a pool to be built.

“They found all sorts of stuff there,” said Doreste. “Pieces of a car, parachutes from 1967 to 1969. There is still more stuff down there.”

Doreste’s home isn’t far from the Homestead Air Reserve Base and its explosive ordinance disposal team was called in.

“The bomb squad came in and they checked and said they found nothing around here,” he said. “I was worried that there was something explosive.”

Despite the all-clear, Doreste believes the issue shouldn’t have been “buried.”

“The government, the base, they shouldn’t put stuff here and the guy selling the land should have checked before selling it,” he said.

Doreste bought the home three years ago. He’s looking forward to having a pool but said he’s now stuck with another bill for getting rid of these items.

“Trash. I have got to pay for all of this and to remove it,” he said.

Doreste wondered if the items ended up there as a result of Hurricane Andrew, which destroyed what was then the Homestead Air Force Base. That happened on August 24th of 1992.

A spokesman for the Homestead Air Reserve Base told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench that he was at Doreste’s home on Wednesday and could not confirm that the items came from the base.

“We just don’t know where they came from,” said the spokesman.


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