PUNXSUTAWNEY — No one would ever think that the PAHS Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test would be the catalyst to reunite a long-lost possession with its owner, but that is exactly what happened in a serendipitous string of events in late December at PAHS.
Each year, PAHS administers the ASVAB test to students who plan to enlist in the military. A representative from ASVAB works in conjunction with junior guidance counselor, Jenny White, to administer the test on the designated date.
Although the representative differs from year to year, this year, Eric Anzur, from outside Pittsburgh, was the test administrator sent from ASVAB.
Anzur had decided to use this opportunity of travelling to Punxsutawney to return a ring he had found while hunting in Butler. Anzur found the 1984 PAHS class ring with engraved initials “K.R.Y.” lodged in a tree while turkey hunting.
“I wish I had a colorful background tale, however, it was the case of a tired hunter who sat down and saw silver in a small tree,” Anzur said. “Upon whittling it out, I was pleased to find a ring. I took it home, where my son used the dremel to clean and polish it. He (Luke) could read the Punxsy script and initials. I made it a point to bring it to Punxsy on my next trip to see if the alumni association could track the owner, and happily, the rest is history.”
During his visit to Punxsutawney, Anzur presented the ring to White in hopes that she could return it to its rightful owner.
“It had initials ‘K.R.Y.’ engraved inside and the year, so I went and got a yearbook to look for someone with those initials,” White said. “Just on an off chance, I mentioned it to Mrs. (Emily) Cassidy, who happened to be friends with his mother-in-law. We were able to track him down based on the initials.”
When White attempted to contact the owner, Kevin Young, she couldn’t reach him; however, she quickly realized that he had a son, Tyler, in ninth grade at PAHS. White was able to send the ring home with him.
“We have no clue when it went missing,” said Young, who knew that the ring was missing, but had no idea when or where it had gone. “Tyler claims he had it in his room when he was little. I don’t remember any of this. We have no idea how it got from there into the woods and into a tree. It is one of the strangest, weirdest things that has ever happened to me. It sort of gave me goose bumps.”
Strangely enough, the ring must have been missing for quite some time.
“He said it was grown into the tree,” Young said. “He had to dig it out with his pocket knife, so it must have been there for a very, very long time. It’s in really good shape for having been outside for all of that time. That was very weird, too. I would expect it to look worse.”
After more than 20 years of separation, Young never imagined he would find his ring again, and no one could have guessed the unlikely path the ring would take in finding him.
“I thought someone was playing a joke on me,” he said. “It was weird and then scared me almost. He said you must have been in the woods in Butler, and I said, no I never was. It was very strange.”
Apparently if you let something go, it truly will find its way back if it is meant to be yours.
“The ring is now with its rightful owner,” Anzur said. “I was glad to see it returned.”