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Last Updated: Sunday, 9 July 2006, 11:35 GMT 12:35 UK
Ring lost in 1969 found in garden
Generic picture of ring
The ring was lost while Mrs Coleman was gardening
A woman who lost a ring given to her on her silver wedding anniversary by her husband has been reunited with it - 37 years after it disappeared.

Joan Coleman lost the white gold ring while doing the gardening in her house in Chepstow in 1969.

This week, the present house owner Terry O'Brien uncovered the ring and contacted Mrs Coleman to check whether it had ever belonged to her.

He said it was "very pleasing" to hand the ring back to its owner.

Mr O'Brien had initially contacted the police to see if the ring had ever been reported missing but was told it had not been.

It was very pleasing to see the smile on the face of a lady who genuinely had lost a treasured possession
Terry O'Brien

He had the ring valued and discovered it was worth between 450 and 600.

However, knowing the woman they had bought the house from had lived there for 40 years, he contacted her son to find out if she had ever lost a ring while living there.

Mr O'Brien said: "It turns out that for Mrs Coleman's silver wedding anniversary, her late husband had bought her a ring.

"In 1969 they were weeding the garden and cutting the holly bush and she noticed it wasn't on her finger.

"They looked for it but couldn't find it. The thing was the ring had gone from the back garden to the front garden with the rubbish.

"I've moved about 20 tonnes of stuff from my garden since I've been here, so it's just amazing."


Mr O'Brien was able to reunite Mrs Coleman, who is now 84, with her ring within four days of finding it.

He said when she Mrs Coleman saw the ring she started crying initially and he knew straightaway it was hers.

Mrs Coleman said: "I just couldn't believe it. Terry could have said nothing about it, but he's just such a kind person."

Mr O'Brien added: "It was very pleasing to see the smile on the face of a lady who genuinely had lost a treasured possession to be re-united with it."

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