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Whitman Marine reservist reunited with lost ring thanks to good Samaritan, police officer

Whitman Marine reservist reunited with lost ring thanks to good Samaritan, police officer
Whitman Marine reservist reunited with lost ring thanks to good Samaritan, police officer 01:56

WHITMAN - A Marine reservist has an important piece of jewelry back -- thanks to a good Samaritan, a determined cop, and a local armed forces recruiter. 

Wanyoike Wainaina strolled up to Whitman Police Headquarters Tuesday night -- to retrieve something he thought was lost forever. It was the 22-year-old Marine's boot camp ring. "It's something that gives you strength when you look at it," he says. "So, it means a lot to me." 

It went missing over the Memorial Day weekend -- not long before the town paid tribute to those in uniform who fought and died for this country. 

A good Samaritan brought it to the police Sunday evening... saying he'd found it near the basketball court on the town common. 

Marine reservist Wanyoike Wainaina Whitman
Marine reservist Wanyoike Wainaina CBS Boston

"There's a lot of good people out there," said police Lieutenant Dan Connolly, "who want to do the right thing. If I'd lost something like this -- I'd want it back for sure." 

"Especially on Memorial Day weekend," said resident Christine Kennedy as she walked her dog on the common. "Finding something like that and having the heart to bring it to the police station was so nice." 

But a post on the police department's Facebook page didn't yield a single clue -- and Lt. Connolly was determined to reunite ring and Marine. 

So, on Tuesday evening, Lt. Connolly called the nearest Marine recruiter -- which happens to be in Brockton -- and read them the boot camp graduation date and platoon number inscribed on the inside of the ring -- and bingo. 

"I never imagined I'd be playing detective today," said Marine Sgt. Cody Rhinehart. "I was actually able to look it up in our system and we only had one kid from Whitman-Hanson High School that graduated in 2020." 

The ring found in Whitman Whitman Police

Within 30 minutes, Lt. Connolly was knocking on Wainaina's door. 

"He was home and said, 'I did lose my ring!'" Lt. Connolly told WBZ. "So, I looked at him and said, 'Boy do I have a story for you!'" 

Turns out, Wainaina played hoops over the weekend -- and that's probably when the ring tumbled into the courtside grass. 

"It's a cool ring -- somebody could have walked off with it," says Wainaina. "So, it really means a lot to me that somebody turned it in -- and people tried so hard to find me. It tells me a lot about the people in Whitman." 

"It's great to have a happy ending," chimes in Lt. Connolly. 

Indeed, this mystery was solved in only 48 hours -- just in time for reservist Wainaina -- who heads to California next week for his annual Marine refresher course. 

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