Evergreen Park high school ring returned after 45 years

It took a fellowship of the ring, you might say, to find the owner of a class ring lost about 45 years ago. And this story ranges from Illinois all the way to Texas.

The ring from a suburban Chicago school was buried in a Texas lake, until a man named Mark went hunting for arrowheads.

"He found a bunch of arrowheads and a number of other items including this class ring that said Evergreen Park High School 1977," said Tim Moran, Director of Public Relations, Evergreen Park Community High School.

It had a name inscribed: Debra Thiessen.

But Mark held onto the ring 22 year before showing it to his co-worker, Randy, who suggested they call the school.

After the call to the Evergreen Park high school, the school staff scoured records for Debra Thiessen, but she was listed as 'missing’, so they turned to a higher power.

"The power of social media and people looking out for strangers, people you've never heard of before," said Moran.

Social media got it done, tracking down Debra Thiessen's daughter in Texas.

Debra had moved to Texas soon after high school, but died three years ago.

Moran spoke with the daughter Friday.


"She broke up a few times over the phone with me. She's just very emotional right now. The ring is going to be reunited with the family and her mom is smiling somewhere," said Moran.

And while there are no wizards or hobbits, there certainly was a fellowship of the ring working to make this happen.

"Just like the Lord of the Rings. The Fellowship. It just took so many different people to get this class ring to it to its rightful owner," said Moran.

And in the end, they honored the motto for Evergreen Park Community High School which Moran says is, "Once a mustang, always a mustang."