Happy ending: Mistakenly donated rings returned




Posted on March 18, 2010 at 3:08 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 18 at 6:01 PM

REDMOND, Wash. - A Bellevue grandmother was all smiles today after the Value Village in Redmond found the rings she had mistakenly donated to a local charity ten days ago.

KING 5 was there when the Value Village manager presented the rings to Gladys Bergstrom.

Bergstrom hugged the manager and told her it restores her faith in people.

"I couldn't believe they found them," Bergstrom said. "I was sure they were gone."

It was 1942 when Gladys married her husband Marvin. World War II was raging so there was no fancy wedding. But on their 40th anniversary, Marvin surprised her with a ring laden with diamonds - more than one and a half carats worth.

After 67 years of marriage, Marvin died last year and Bergstrom worried about someone stealing that ring and several others she'd received over the years from friends and family. So, she put them in a small bag and hid it in a shoe.

Last week, Bergstrom made a big mistake when she put her charitable donations out on the porch for collection. She mistakenly included her white Easy Spirit shoes with some others.

When she realized what had happened, Bergstrom and her daughter rushed to Value Village where her donations had ended up.

Some of her shoes were there, but not the Easy Spirits.

Then, however, a sorter who works in the back warehouse of Value Village told KING 5 he was going through a black plastic bag full of clothes when he saw a little red mesh bag that matched the description of the one that Bergstrom had reported missing with the rings inside.

Jose Flores-Hurtado said he was surprised and happy when he realized what he had found.

Gladys had offered a reward for the return of her rings. Value Village says it will not accept the reward.