We finally know the full story behind the viral In-N-Out burger that was mysteriously found on the streets of New York

The In-N-Out burger that was found on the streets of Queens, New York.

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The In-N-Out burger that was found on the streets of Queens, New York.
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Lincoln Boehm

The case of the In-N-Out burger that has captivated the nation for days after it was mysteriously found on the streets of New York on Saturday has finally been solved by a 16-year-old high-school student.

Helen Vivas, of Queens, New York, on Tuesday messaged Lincoln Boehm, the man who found the burger, and explained how the burger from the beloved West Coast chain got to New York.

Vivas exclusively told INSIDER about the burger’s cross-country journey and how she kept it in such pristine condition during a six-hour flight.

The In-N-Out burger.

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The In-N-Out burger.
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Lincoln Boehm

Vivas had been visiting family friends in San Diego. Right before she left for the airport to return to New York, Vivas went to In-N-Out and ordered two Double-Doubles and two single cheeseburgers with the vegetables in a separate bag to be assembled later.

She said she carried the burgers on her lap throughout the flight.

“I don’t think I was the first to bring In-N-Out from the West Coast back home on a plane,” she said.

What was perhaps the most puzzling aspect of the mystery burger was its pristine condition – it was fully intact, even though it was more than six hours old. Vivas had an answer for that as well.

“I wanted the burger to arrive fresh so I could enjoy it the next day,” Vivas told INSIDER. “I requested the employee to pack the burgers without any of its famous In-N-Out sauce and other condiments.”

Vivas explained all of this to Boehm over Instagram.

A screenshot of the Instagram direct-message conversation between Vivas and Boehm.

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A screenshot of the Instagram direct-message conversation between Vivas and Boehm.
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Helen Vivas

Vivas said she got back to New York around 5:30 a.m. and took a train to Jamaica, a neighborhood in Queens, so that she could transfer to a bus that would take her to her home in Flushing, Queens.

Unfortunately for Vivas, she dropped one of the burgers while running to catch the bus, she said. She later messaged a friend about the incident.

A screenshot of an Instagram conversation Vivas had with a friend.

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A screenshot of an Instagram conversation Vivas had with a friend.
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Helen Vivas

Read more: Here’s how In-N-Out keeps prices shockingly low while paying employees better than fast-food rivals

Boehm then stumbled upon the burger and posted a photo of it on social media, where it quickly went viral.

Vivas told INSIDER that if her friends hadn’t told her about the media frenzy, she might have never known that her burger had been found.

“My friends sent me an article that People magazine wrote which featured Lincoln and his Instagram post,” Vivas said. “I honestly could not believe how much this blew up all over the internet. I Instagram messaged Lincoln last night not even expecting him to answer, and thankfully he did within seconds.”

Vivas said she’s happy that her burger survived the streets of New York.

“I am glad to see my burger didn’t end up being hit by a car, as I thought,” she added.

She said the national media attention had been surreal for her.

“I’m just a normal kid, after all. Never did I think dropping a burger in the early morning would cause such a frenzy amongst the internet,” she said. “I’m just an ordinary person. My friends and I are just laughing about the situation, while my family and I are just taking it in.”

An Instagram Story Vivas posted at the In-N-Out where she purchased the now famous burger.

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An Instagram Story Vivas posted at the In-N-Out where she purchased the now famous burger.
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Helen Vivas

Vivas, who has been to California three times, told INSIDER that favorite In-N-Out order is a Double-Double cheeseburger, a side of fries, and a medium lemonade.

She said she wasn’t interested in being an In-N-Out spokesperson.

“I’m about to enter my senior year of high school, and I just want to focus on my schooling and applying for colleges,” she said.

Vivas encouraged people to buy the shirts that Boehm is selling to commemorate the situation, saying that “100% of the proceeds will be donated to the New York City Food Bank.”

“I was glad to see that all of this has turned into good,” Vivas said.

Boehm has also become a bit of a viral sensation after finding the Double-Double and posting the photo of it on Instagram.

“It genuinely shook me to my core,” he told the New York Post, a line that earned a shout-out on Twitter from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York.

Boehm later revealed in an essay on Vice’s food vertical, Munchies, how Vivas finally solved the mystery of the In-N-Out burger.