When two confused delivery men opened the door to a telephone booth on a cold, January morning in 1954 and discovered a cooing baby, they had no idea how he got there.
“He was pretty happy for being all alone,” said one of the men at the time. “He smiled at me when I picked him up.”
It would take 64 years and a DNA test for the mystery of the “little boy with blue-eyes” to be solved.
His eyes have now darkened to brown, but 64-year-old Phoenix resident Steve Dennis knows he was the approximately 2-month-old baby with no birth date, birth place or birth parents left in the booth.
The delivery men found the infant wrapped in blankets inside a cardboard box in a phone booth just outside Yielky’s Drive-In near Lancaster, Ohio.
There was no telling how long he had been waiting there, perhaps only a few hours.
According to the delivery men, little Dennis was “very cold to the touch” and so was the bottle of milk left with him in the box.
The mystery soon captivated the residents of Lancaster, and then later, the entire country.
In just two days, dozens of couples inquired about adopting the child, and literally scores of people tried to help police identify the baby abandoned in the phone booth.
Nobody knew who put him there or what their motivation was, and for a long time in the decades that followed, Dennis didn’t know either.
For years, Steve Dennis didn’t even think the story was true.
“It was too far-fetched,” he remembered.
He also never expected to learn the identity of his biological mother or the story leading up to being left that cold winter day.
But over time, he began to get curious…