A long-lost high school friend returns


June 30, 1999|By Donna Koros Stramella | Donna Koros Stramella,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

I'VE HEARD that good things come to those who wait. The adage proved true for a lifelong Glen Burnie resident who also happens to be my sister. When Gail Ehrlich (then Gail Koros) took a cruise with friends in 1979, she knew what she'd be coming home with -- a great tan and some terrific memories. But she had no idea what she'd be leaving behind.

While jumping the waves that lapped onto Bermuda's pink sand beach, she felt her school ring slip from her finger. Maybe it was the thrust of the water or maybe it was the lubrication from the suntan oil, but the ring was gone. Nearby snorkelers dived to look for the ring. Their efforts were in vain.

A year later, when Gail joined the Class of 1980 at Glen Burnie High's graduation, her right ring finger was ring-less. Eventually, she received another class ring. Her husband, Carl Ehrlich, who had probably heard the story one too many times, contacted a local jeweler for a replacement. The ring was nice, but it wasn't the original.

This week, she opened up her mail and slipped the original ring back back into its rightful place. It turns out that about the time Gail was receiving her diploma, a gentleman from Minnesota was snorkeling with friends in Bermuda. In about 20 feet of water, he saw two rings among shells and coral -- a class ring and a gold wedding band. He retrieved the rings and took them home.

Nineteen years later, Pete Isaacs was looking through mementos in a cigar box when he came across the rings and began to wonder. Tracking down the owner of a wedding ring with just a date and set of initials seemed impossible, but a 1980 Glen Burnie High School class ring? The white gold ring included a star-burst design and the initials "GLK."

"I was really feeling guilty for keeping it so long," Isaacs said later. So, after a quick Internet search, he called the school. Records showed only one 1980 female graduate who matched the initials: Gail L. Koros. (I'd tell you what the "L" stands for, but my sister would never speak to me again.)

Fortunately, Gail had attended her reunions, so records reflected her current address and phone number.

When my sister attends her 20-year reunion in 2000, she'll be sporting a "new" accessory -- her old class ring.

Speaking of reunions

The season for Glen Burnie High reunions is nearly here. Dust off your yearbook, lose a few pounds and don't forget your class ring.

Elvis was just stepping up to the plate and Judy Garland hit a home run with "A Star is Born" in 1954. That year's graduating class will celebrate its 45-year reunion Sept. 4 at Snyder's Willow Grove Restaurant. Tickets are $40. The evening begins with cocktails at 7 p.m., followed by dinner at 8 p.m. and dancing from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. For details, call Sandra Brown Davis, 410-360-5260, or Joyce Thackston Smith, 410-544-6230.

The Class of 1974 will mark its silver anniversary at Michaels Eighth Avenue from 7: 30 p.m. to midnight Oct. 8. Casual dress is suggested for the bull roast and shrimp feast. Tickets are $35. The celebration continues Oct. 9 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. with a family picnic at Lake Waterford Park in Pasadena. For more information, call Gary Voith at 410-360-5455 or Lois Franco Kendell at 410-461-8016.

The Class of 1979 will mark its 20-year anniversary with a bull roast and shrimp feast at Michaels Eighth Avenue from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Oct. 16. Tickets are $29 before Sept. 1 and $31 after that. For more information, call Gretchen Daniels Smith at 410-437-4362 or Lynda Moyer McPheron at 410-761-7402.

The Class of 1994 will celebrate its five-year reunion from 8 p.m. to midnight Oct. 16 at Council's on East Patapsco Avenue. Tickets are $35 and will include a chicken and beef dinner and an open bar. A disc jockey will provide dance music. For reservations and information, call Heather Davis 410-768-1289 or Becky Johns at 410-768-6052.

Independence party

Celebrate our country's independence with a block party beginning at 6 p.m. Saturday on the parking lot of Marley Park Church of the Nazarene. The free event will include hot dogs on the grill and music by the Christian rock band Crosswalk. The church is at 7741 Baltimore-Annapolis Blvd. For details, call the church office at 410-768-1852.

Music camp

Trying to keep the kids occupied this summer? Faith Baptist Church will offer its annual Summer Music Camp from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through July 9. The $15 fee includes a T-shirt, cassette tape and snacks. Campers should bring lunch.

Under the direction of music minister Paul Higgins, children will learn the musical "Father Knows Best," a production that encourages a more trusting relationship with God.

The four-day camp will include drama, choreography and songs. Campers will perform the musical at Faith Baptist at 6 p.m. July 11. The church is at 7378 Furnace Branch Road. For information, call 410-761-5346.

Pub Date: 6/30/99

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