Tillamook school Superintendent Randy Schild said 125 students were taken to see "The Hobbit" Wednesday morning at the Tillamook Coliseum Theatre as a reward for their good grades and two seventh-graders spotted a loaded handgun on the ground in the aisle of the theater, KPTV, Portland, Ore., reported Friday.
The boys, Kolton McKinney and Levi Crabtree, quickly alerted a school worker, who called police.
"I'm a boy scout and Kolton and me took a hunter safety class," Crabtree said. "One of the rules is that you treat all guns as if they're loaded."
Police said a 61-year-old man came to the theater Wednesday night to ask if anyone had found his missing gun. He said he called the theater Tuesday night and earlier Wednesday, but there was no answer.
The man, who police said has a concealed carry license, said it did not occur to him to call law enforcement about the missing gun.
Police said the weapon is being held in evidence while the Tillamook County Sheriff's Office prepares a report for the district attorney's office.
Schild praised McKinney and Crabtree for doing the right thing.
"Our students reacted exactly like we would hope and that is they recognized that is was a gun, recognized that they needed to stay away and contact a teacher immediately," Schild said. "I hope this is a learning opportunity not only for our students, but any students that see it on TV or anywhere else."