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New Jersey man reunited with high school class ring lost for 5 decades

Jim Keelen lost the ring just a few days after he graduated from Watchung Regional High School in 1972.

News 12 Staff

Jun 30, 2023, 7:05 AM

Updated 354 days ago


A high school class ring that was lost back in 1972 is found and returned to its owner after 51 years.
Jim Keelen graduated back in 1972. He had just been gifted his high school class ring, which he proudly wore.
Within a few days of receiving it, he thought for sure it was gone for good after losing it one day at the beach. A Facebook post that was published just two weeks ago changed everything.
"Fifty-one years later, this is happening. I still can't believe it," Keelen said.
Anthony DiMaria Sadorski, 21, had been enjoying some time near the water in Point Plesant Boro during sunset. He was snapping a few pictures when something sparkled out of the corner of his eye and that is when he stumbled across the ring.
He immediately knew he wanted to find the person who it belonged to.
The post eventually reached the Watchung Regional High School Class of 72 Facebook page, where it all clicked.
"They say, 'Jim that's got to be you that they're looking for,'" Keelen said.
He said the ring itself was lost just a few days after he graduated. Keelen and a few of his friends were enjoying a day at the beach when he looked down and realized it was gone.
He thought for sure he would never see it again until just last week, when it was shipped home.
"The ring was in decent shape having been gone for 51 years," Keelen said.
For a ring, it also traveled pretty far, as it was lost near Jenkinsons Boardwalk and then found a few miles inland near the North Branch Beaverdam Creek. Keelen thinks Superstorm Sandy may have played a role.
"My thinking is that it washed off the beach further inland into these marshes and creek," Keelen said.
Regardless of how it may have ended up where it did, repairs are now underway at a local jeweler, and it is in the process of getting resized.
"I'm going to wear it. I mean this is unbelievable. I'll wear it," Keelen said.
The finding is a reminder to him that there is still plenty of good in the world.
"It's just heartwarming to see something like this happen. It's incredible to me and I can't thank him enough. I really can't," Keelen said.

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