Treasure Washes Up on Venezuela’s Shore, Bringing Gold and Hope to a Village

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GUACA, Venezuela — The most extraordinary moment in the young fisherman’s life began in the most mundane way: with a morning visit to the latrine.

Walking back to his tin-roofed hut on Venezuela’s Caribbean coast, the fisherman, Yolman Lares, saw something glisten along the shore. Raking his hand through the sand, he pulled up a gold medallion with an image of the Virgin Mary.

The village of Guaca was once at the center of Venezuela’s fish processing industry but is now reduced to penury by the lack of gasoline and the closure of most of its small fish-packing plants. Amid such misery, the valuable find seemed like a miracle

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