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Man buys Olivia Newton-John's iconic 'Grease' jacket for $243,200, then gives it back

The man, who said he was Newton-John's number one fan, said he wanted to 'respectfully return it to its rightful owner.'
Credit: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP
FILe - In this Jan. 27, 2018 file photo, Olivia Newton-John attends the 2018 G'Day USA Los Angeles Gala at the InterContinental Hotel Los Angeles. Newton-John says she has been diagnosed with cancer for the third time in three decades. The four-time Grammy winner, who will turn 70 on Sept. 26, told Australian news program “Sunday Night” doctors found a tumor in her lower back in 2017. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

"Grease" actress Olivia Newton-John was reunited with a cherished possession after a stranger returned her iconic "Grease" jacket. The man bought the jacket at an auction for $243,200. 

The jacket was sold in November, along with the skintight pants the actress wore in the musical movie. The ensemble fetched a total of $405,700. The proceeds went to the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Centre in Australia. The actress revealed in September she had been diagnosed with cancer in her spine. It's her third cancer diagnoses, after battling breast cancer twice.

Newton-John said she wore the jacket on tour for several years until she threw it across the stage one night and her publicist realized it was THE jacket.

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"He said, 'I don't think you should be wearing it and throwing it across the stage. You've got to lock it up,'" Newton-John said. "I didn't even think of it. I had no comprehension that maybe this would be of value one day, so that's how it ended up in my closet for quite a long time.

On Wednesday, Julien's Auctions posted an update, where Newton-John was gifted her jacket back in a bright pink package. She didn't recognize the man at first, but then he revealed himself to be the buyer of her jacket. 

"The odds of beating a recurrent cancer using the newest emergent therapies is 1,000-fold greater than someone appearing out of the blue, buying your most famous and cherished icon and returning it to you, which is what I'm going to do right now," he read from a note. 

The buyer wanted to remain anonymous, so his face was blurred out in the video. 

Newton-John could be seen tearing up, as she says "Are you serious? That's the sweetest thing." 

"This jacket belongs to you and the collective soul of those who love you, those for whom you are the soundtrack of their lives," he added. "It should not sit in a billionaire's closet for country club bragging rights. For this reason I humbly and respectfully return it to its rightful owner, which is you." 

"That is the most incredibly generous thing to do for me," Newton-John responded. "I'm so grateful, and I'm just blown away that you've given such a huge donation to my center." 

The actress said she was grateful for "the most beautiful present" but mainly she was grateful for the buyers "heart." 

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