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Topic: OT: finders keepers (77 lines)
1) From: Aaron
Floyd, I belong to a metal detecting club, and we actually do go to 
great lengths to find the owners of stuff like that we find.
One of the more fun ones is class rings.  We often find them, and 
contact the schools and explain basically what we did, who we are etc.
I have a 1983 ring from your school with the initials xyz in it.  Can 
you possibly look and see which student was named that so I can contact 
them and return the ring, or even a name will work....   Once you get a 
name, you can then go through the phone book, and other resources to try 
to find the people.   When you do find them, we tell them, I think I 
found your ring, can you describe it, if they do, then we mail the ring 
back to them.   Sometimes the schools don't want to give the info out, 
which you cant blame them really, but will contact the person themselves 
or put you in touch with someone who can help you.   Law enforcement 
helps too sometimes.
One thing you have to be careful of is saying something on the spot 
about finding a ring or anything really good..   We had a few incidents 
where a few detectorists found some stuff, and the local trailer trash 
walking down the beach asks ya find anything, and the guy said, yeah, I 
found this ring, and shows it to them.  Half an hour later the miserable 
#$^# calls the cops and says, I lost my ring, and he seen me lose it, 
and has it and wont give it back, and gives a brief description of the 
ring you just shown to it.  Now it's your word against theirs to the 
cops..... as they try to pull a scam to try to steal the ring you just 
found.  See I can show you a picture of the ring now, but if you try to 
claim it as yours, and I say, ok, where did you lose it at, you don't 
know where I found it, your credibility is out the window.  But if you 
were there with me when i found it and decided to try something that 
dirty, it's a lot uglier then to try to prove my innocence and that I 
didnt steal it from you.
when it comes to wedding rings and ones like that it becomes more 
difficult as they really don't have initials or high school names or 
things you can really pin down a starting point on.  For that you just 
check the lost and found ads or the sherriffs office to see if anyone 
reported anything lost / stolen.   A ring this big, if I am not 
mistaken, if you lose it and report it lost to an insurance company, 
don't they want a police report, that you reported it lost to the cops 
before they will honor the claim?   If so, then you have a record 
there,  yah, 4 months ago someone said they lost a diamond wedding 
ring,  call them, say, hey, I might have your ring, can you describe it, 
and again, if they do, then you return it to them.
Watches and bracelets are another item we find fairly fequently as well.
One of our members had kind of a sad find a few months ago.  he found a 
class ring, and after a few months was able to locate the guys parents, 
and asked hey, do you know where he is now, I found his ring and want to 
return it, and was informed he had passed away many years ago of 
cancer.  He ended up giving the ring to the parents as a memorial sort 
of thing.
Last year I found a ring in a park that was from one of the local 
schools and was able to find the person fairly quickly, they lived down 
the road maybe 20 minutes, so I mailed the ring off with a pound of home 
roasted coffee just for the heck of it.  I figgure that's as good as a 
way as any to spread the cheer of good coffee.
Its always great when you can return something to the owner, especially 
if it's been gone for years and years,  the story of it's 'travels' and 
the history of it is worth it... I mean think about it,  something was 
gone for that long, lost to the world and you discovered it... It's kind 
of a rush in a way.
Well finishing off the last of my kona now,  Poured the thermos full in 
my nissan 1.5 liter at about 6 am,  it's 1 pm now and it's still piping 
hot!  Love that thermos.
Aaron


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