A Florida police officer purchased a new wedding ring for a hospitalized Alzheimer’s patient after her original ring was stolen from her finger.
The original ring was purchased for Betty Wagner by her husband, Arthur, in 1946, when the two became engaged. Betty, now 87, has been hospitalized for some time as she battles Alzheimer’s Disease. Her husband has been by her bedside, offering support as she undergoes various treatments.
Betty was sedated in the hospital when an unknown thief removed the ring from her finger. Law enforcement officials have determined that the ring was likely to have been stolen — rather than lost or missplaced — due to the bruising surrounding the woman’s fingers.
Police Officer Laurie Graber was assigned to the Wagners’ case, and she felt an emotional connection to the elderly couple after meeting them in the hospital.
“After 67 years of that ring being on her finger, she still looked at him like he was her knight in shining armor, and he looked at her like she was still his young bride,” Graber said. “I went to J.C. Penney, and I bought a small ring, and I took it back to the hospital, and I left a little note.”
The note read, "A promise kept for 67 years is worth something."
The criminal investigation into the ring’s disappearance is still underway, but at least the symbol of the bond between the Wagners can remain intact in the meantime.
According to WSVN, Arthur has claimed that Graber’s purchase of the new ring has “helped ease the pain” of the initial loss.