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Family heirloom found in Hamburg parking lot, returned to owners

Jenny Woolridge had no idea when she started a day of errands with her three-year-old son in Hamburg that the trip would lead to a holiday miracle for a Lexington family.

She tells us, “Adam and I were running errands on Friday, Nov 20th, and went into Kohl’s. On our way back to our car, Adam bent down and picked up a ring in the parking lot. He constantly picks up things from the ground everywhere we go, little did we know how special this ring would turn out to be. I originally called Kohl’s when we found the ring, but no one had reported losing anything yet. At that time, we didn’t know if the ring was real or not, but just kept thinking how heartbroken someone must be if it was. My husband Brian placed an ad online stating that a ladies ring was found in the Hamburg area. After no response, I called stores in Hamburg again on Monday.”

By this time, Betty Ellis McGuire had gone into several stores in the Hamburg area and reported a missing ring.  After a hard day of shopping, she’d noticed that her mother’s engagement ring must’ve slipped from her finger. She retraced her steps without success and left contact info at some of the stores.

Betty’s mother, Anne Ellis, told friends on Facebook, “I had worn that ring since 1955 when my husband who was in the Air Force gave it to me. I loved it, but having lost 40 pounds recently it was slipping and sliding and I knew it was time to pass it on. I felt so sorry for Betty when it slipped off her little finger as she was out taking me shopping for new clothes. I remember wearing it to work in Frankfort the first day, polishing my nails before work and not being able to take my eyes off it — so happy to be engaged to a nice man at last (I was 25) —hardly an ‘old maid’ as they used to say but I was getting up there.”

The Ellises recently celebrated their 60th anniversary.Hamburg_Miracle2

On Monday, when the Woolridges called Kohl’s again, this time the store had Betty McGuire’s contact information.

Jenny says, “That evening Brian called Mrs. McGuire to let her know our son found her ring. We wanted to do this in front of our children so that they can see what it means to do the right thing and how good that feels. Mr. McGuire picked up the ring from our business, Foreign Affairs Autowerks, on Tuesday, Nov 24th, and also had a gift bag of toys and cookies for Adam, which was very generous of them. Adam has no idea of the importance of what he found, only that the nice lady who gave him toys is happy to have her ring back. Once we heard the history of the ring it made us feel even happier to return such a priceless family heirloom. That Friday we were just in the right place at the right time and Adam was doing his usual job of scouring the ground. On Facebook there are comments of how honest it was to return the ring, but we were just doing the right thing. It wasn’t ours, and if we had lost something so special, we would hope that someone would find us too.”Hamburg_Miracle

She adds, “This has been a great lesson to Adam and his sister in doing what is right. Thank you to the McGuires for their kindness and generosity towards Adam for finding the ring and to everyone for the wonderful comments regarding our parenting.”

Anne Ellis is glad the story has a happy ending. She says on Facebook, “I have another that was my father’s that I will give my other daughter next week. So glad it has all worked out and I enjoyed them in my younger days. Life has been good to me.”

This article also appears on page 5 of the December issue of the Hamburg Journal.

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