A postcard from Hong Kong will be returned -- 26 years later -- to its sender back home in Illinois

The postcard, dated July 8, 1993, arrived this month in a mailbox in Springfield, Illinois.

(CNN)It took 26 years for a postcard to make it from Hong Kong to Illinois, but the rest of the journey should go much quicker.

The postcard, dated July 8, 1993, arrived in Kim Draper's mailbox in Springfield on, of all days, July 8.
It was addressed to Leena and Muhammad Ali Kizilbash and signed, "Your Dad."
Draper thought they might have been previous owners but didn't find their names in property records. The home's last owner didn't know them either, she said.
    So, Draper shared the mystery with her local newspaper and then with CNN, in hopes someone who knew them would see it.
    It worked.
    Kizilbash learned about the postcard from a friend who heard about it on the radio, he told CNN.
    It had been sent by his dad, Masrour Kizilbash, who'd stopped in Hong Kong on his way to work on a dam project in China. At the time, Muhammad Ali Kizilbash would have just graduated high school and his sister, Leena, been prepping for medical school, the younger man said.
    The elder Kizilbash's work as a geotechnical engineer took him all over the world, and he always sent postcards -- from Costa Rica, Jordan and other far-flung places -- because international phone calls were pretty expensive, his son said.