A relic lost over a half-century ago recently popped back up in Queens and triggered a hunt for its owner.
Woodhaven metal detector enthusiast Tracy Behling was combing the beach in Far Rockaway when she found a ring from the Brooklyn College Class of 1955. It also had initials inscribed inside, enabling her to track down the 87-year-old owner, who lives on Long Island.
Behling often takes her Minelab Equinox 600 detecting tools down to the beach to see what she can find. Just as she was getting ready to leave the beach after a session on Oct. 17, her detector got a very good signal, and her wife, Tammy Schillin, dug out the ring, which was about 10 inches under the sand.
Schillin did a little research and found a link on the Brooklyn College website to a woman, Phyllis Simon, who wrote the journal for the Class of 1955 50th class reunion in 2005.
When she emailed Simon with the info and her phone number, she got a call the next day.
With Simon’s yearbook in hand, she was able to identify the owner of the ring, whose family members have asked for his name not to be published, based on his initials.
Behling revealed the story in the Nov. 10 Daily News Voice of the People letters section.
“I cold-called based on a number and address off of whitepages.com. His wife confirmed that it was his, and they were very excited about it,” said Behling.
Behling added that the owner’s wife said she distinctly remembers when he lost the ring at Rockaway Beach the summer after graduating.
To ensure this wasn’t some type of scam and schedule a time to drop off the ring, Behling began communicating through the owner’s daughter.
They made arrangements to meet so she could return the ring, but Covid-19 has made that complicated. Due to a combination of pandemic concerns and bad weather, the meeting was postponed, and Behling is still considering whether to mail the ring or try to reschedule.