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Class ring lost in rental car in 2012 found by vehicle's new owner

Bruce Patterson's College of William & Mary class of 1980 ring, which was lost in a rental car in 2012, was returned to him after the vehicle's current owner, Katelyn Manigly, found it wedged between the seats. Photo courtesy of the College of William & Mary
Bruce Patterson's College of William & Mary class of 1980 ring, which was lost in a rental car in 2012, was returned to him after the vehicle's current owner, Katelyn Manigly, found it wedged between the seats. Photo courtesy of the College of William & Mary

Jan. 4 (UPI) -- A class ring lost in a rental car in 2012 was returned to its owner after the car's new owner found it between the seats of the vehicle.

Pennsylvania resident Katelyn Manigly said she was looking between the seats of her car for a missing key fob when she found a class of 1980 ring from the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va.

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"My family bought the car many years ago, but I didn't find the ring until I dropped a fob and moved around all the seats in the car. It just tumbled out," Mangily said in a news release from the school.

Mangily said the ring sat on a shelf in her home for a few months before she examined it closely and was able to make out "Bruce W. P." engraved inside the band.

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Manigly reached out to the W&M Alumni Association, which was able to identify Bruce Patterson as the most likely owner.

"Good thing there weren't any other Bruce W. P.s in the Class of 1980," Patterson said. "When the Alumni Association first reached out to me, they did so in an email. The subject line was 'Did You Lose Your Class Ring?'"

Patterson said he initially thought the email was an advertisement, but he was "dumbfounded" when he read the text and discovered his ring had been found.

"I immediately responded that I had lost mine many years ago," he said.

Patterson said he lost the ring in 2012, but he was never sure exactly where it had gone missing.

"For many years, I thought I had taken my ring off to work out at my local YMCA. I figured someone had taken it to the local pawn shop or sold it for the value of the gold and that I would never see it again," he said.

It turned out that Patterson, who traveled frequently for business in 2012, lost the ring in a Hertz rental car in the Southeast or Midwest. The car was later in a severe accident and ended up at a refurbishment company, where it was purchased by Manigly's aunt, before the older woman then sold the car to Manigly.

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Patterson said he is grateful to Manigly for returning his long-lost ring.

"To say thank you, I offered to fly her anywhere in the United States. I hope she takes me up on it. I just want to do something to express my gratitude," Patterson said.

Manigly said she is considering taking Patterson up on his offer and taking a trip to Charleston, S.C., in the near future.

A Texas woman whose class ring was stolen during a burglary 18 years ago was reunited with the long-lost item on Christmas Day. Norah Constantino, a 1989 graduate of San Antonio's Southside High School, said her ring was taken during a burglary in 2003.

The ring was found in 2017 in the change machine the Abilene Teachers Federal Credit Union, and was kept at the bank's lost and found for years, until an employee contacted the school district.

Constantino was presented with her long-lost ring on Christmas Day.

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