Franklin County woman's engagement ring found after 25 years - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Franklin County woman's engagement ring found after 25 years

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FRANKLIN COUNTY (WSIL) -- You can say that Joe and Sue McGhee were meant to be.

They were born on the same day two years apart, at the same hospital, to the same doctor. Sue was 16 and Joe was 18 when they got engaged and eventually married in February 1977. She remembers how excited she was to get her ring.

"I thought it was the biggest ring that was ever given to anybody," Sue said as she slipped the ring on her finger. "I was flashing it around like, 'Hey, I got a diamond.' When you're 16 it's a pretty big deal."

One night before going to bed, Sue heard her ring fall off the nightstand. When she went to search for it, she realized it had fallen into a vent.

"Every time we did anything that had to do with that one vent, I'd have the guys look just in case," Sue said.

For the last 25 years she asked anyone working on her vents to check for the ring in case it popped up. They came up empty each time.

Sue admits she and her husband thought the ring was lost forever, but she never gave up hope of finding it. 

Her persistence and patience paid off one morning in November. After enlisting the help of a local HVAC company, she asked them to check the vents for her ring.

Not expecting the ring, one of the workers came out from the crawlspace underneath the home with a sparkling surprise.

"The one guy came out and said, 'I got it.' I was like, 'Oh, you're lying. You're lying, there's no way,'" Sue laughed.

Her ring was dirty and black after nearly three decades inside the vent. She cleaned it up using toothpaste and a toothbrush, and the ring looked just as it did all those years ago.

The ring's discovery closes a chapter in the McGhee's book. "Every little bit that goes on in our lives is just another part of our history that makes us who we are."

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