Friends exchange same card for 60 years!

For 60 years, two friends have been giving each other the same card...
For 60 years, two friends have been giving each other the same card...

It may be the most well traveled Christmas card in America.

Art Hebel first saw it 60 years ago when his mom bought a box of cards at a school fundraiser.

"I says I want a card to send to my friend," said Hebel.

The first time he hand delivered it to Bill Nichols.

In 1948 they were inseparable buddies growing up in Richmond.

The next year Bill unwittingly began an odd tradition.

"I called him a cheapskate because he sent me the same card back.  I says all right I put it away.  Next year I crossed off his name wrote my name up and wrote ha ha and gave it back to him," explained Hebel.         
 
The exchange continued as Bill went from grade school, high school, marriage, parenthood and then retirement.

Bill eventually moved to Indiana.

He gets the card one year and art gets it the next.

"When I receive it I put it away.  I show it that's it and I put it away and that's where it stays all year," said Hebel.

They only write their names and the year inside the card.

Messages are inserted on other paper.

It's the only time they communicate.

For safekeeping, the card has been copied and each year it's sent by certified mail.

"But it's worth it because the card is so valuable to us.  Maybe not to anybody else.  Between him and I the card means a lot," said Hebel.

Now and then they've skipped the exchange.

But Art believes it's going to keep going until one of them dies.