MASON CITY, Iowa (KIMT) – Tom and Lois had only been dating for a few months when they lost a ring in the Great Blanket Toss of 1967.
But what once was lost has now been found.
“She had laid my ring on a blanket that she was sitting on in the grass,” explains Terry Long. “When we got up to go one of us, I don’t remember who, picked up picked up the blanket, shook it out and we never did find it.”
“I still carry that guilt of, ‘oh I lost that for him,’ and I felt bad,” says Lois Long.
They say they went back week after week to search the grounds, but after they couldn’t find anything, they did their best to put it out of their heads. Now, fate has stepped in.
Almost 50 years later, while Mason City postal worker Tom Teeter was scouring a field with his metal detector, he found the ultimate treasure. “I thought I had found just another nickel, so I dug down to about 5 inches and what I saw just shocked me,” he says.
It was Long’s ring, still in pretty good shape, just waiting to be discovered.
“The next day, I decided to do a little research on the computer and found a picture of the graduating class of 1965 Meservey Thornton High School,” Teeter explains. “There was only one person with the same initials that were on the ring, TL, and so I had a name, Terry Long.”
After tracking Terry down through a former employer, Tom finally delivered the good news through a phone call. The very next day, the three met up, and Teeter returned the precious find to its rightful owner.
“I feel that God has a plan in our lives,” Long says. “And the ring was lost for a reason, and that reason was to show Tom’s honesty.”
The Long’s have been looking into restoring and repairing the ring, and what the warranty will still cover after all of this time. They have reached out to Jostens, the company who manufactured the ring, and are planning on meeting with them at their Owatonna headquarters in the next couple of weeks.