Up From the Muck

Over thirty years ago, David Perkey was canoeing on Lake Accotink in Northern Virginia. His hand was wet and cold, and in a flash his 1972 IUP class ring slipped from his finger and tumbled into the water. Figuring it was lost forever, he bought a replacement ring and went on with his life.

Fast-forward to Fall 2006. While operating a dredging machine near the lake, a worker noticed something at the end of a belt that separates the dredge material from the water. The gold ring with a red stone was engraved with the university name and class year, and inside were the initials DNP. The worker’s sister-in-law contacted the IUP Office of Alumni Relations about the find. Thanks to the IUP Development Services office, just over a month later the long-lost ring was reunited with its owner.

David Perkey '72

David Perkey '72 and his class rings

“The ring is in amazingly good shape, just slightly tarnished,” Perkey said. “In some cases, the detail on the ring is better than the replacement I’ve been wearing.”

The rings

The lost, original ring (right) and its replacement

Although he still participates in water sports, swimming, fishing, and boating, Perkey notes that he’s learned not to wear rings during those activities. As for which class ring he’ll choose to wear on special occasions, he’s still not sure.

Perkey and his wife, Patty, live in Dunedin, Fla., where he is a computer programmer and web developer for Scientech, a company that provides consulting and information services for the electric utility industry. He has two children, Keith and Shane.