Diamond Rings Found In Salvation Army Kettle

Posted at 10:56 PM, Dec 22, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-22 23:56:36-05

Three diamond rings, valued at $1,100, were dropped in one of the seven red kettles set up around Wilson county.

It's the season for joy and love. The Salvation Army in Wilson County knows something about that.

"These are our elves here," laughed Social Services Director Marie Wulfing, walking into a room of volunteers stuffing 500 envelopes.

With hearts full of love, they also fulfill $20,000-worth of special toy orders for kids of families in need.

"We deliver. Actually as late as Christmas Eve I'll be going out," Wulfing said.

Just in time for Christmas they received the ultimate symbol of love when the diamond rings were anonymously dropped in the kettle.

"There was a one dollar bill that had a rubber band around it - seemed strange," said Sgt. Tom Freeman, who heads up the Wilson County Salvation Army, "they undid the rubber band, opened up the dollar bill and inside that dollar we found these wedding bands."

The Wilson County office opened just 8 Christmases ago. They've never received anything like this.

"There's a sentimental piece of this gift that is undeniable," Freeman said.

A jeweler told them the rings are worth at least $1,100 dollars. That's a lot of presents that can help parents without a lot of money show their love during the holiday season.

"My best gift was a girl put on her thing "sewing machine" and when her mom came in and saw it," Wulfing said, choking up at the memory, "I was like, it made her Christmas."

And to the anonymous donor who dropped the rings the Army staff and volunteers send their love.

"If they hear this we'd just say Merry Christmas and thank you so much," Freeman said.

Because his or her gift will make spreading the love a little easier.

The Wilson County Salvation Army says it gets a third of its entire yearly budget from the holiday red kettle campaign. 

Staff usually hold on to anything that looks important for a while in case it was dropped by mistake. But they say the way the rings were wrapped shows it was no accident.

They could sell the rings to a jeweler or give them to someone in exchange for a reasonable donation.