Carold Copeland's 1972 high school class ring has finally found its way back to him - 17 years and several thousand miles later.

The 37-year-old Copeland of Shreveport, La., had given up on the ring after it was stolen from his apartment in 1972.Last week, Richard Dickerson walked into Copeland's radiator shop, pulled out the ring and asked, "Does this look familiar?"

Dickerson, an Oklahoma City native, found the ring in 1972 in a restaurant washroom in Saigon, Vietnam, where he was on military duty. He tossed it in a bag and forgot about it.

Years later Dickerson came across the ring and asked a friend working at Shreveport television station KSLA to try to locate its owner. The friend's wife called school officials, who determined the ring's owner through the initials on it.

Dickerson sent the ring to the friend at the television station to pass along to Copeland. The friend, though, absent-mindedly placed it in a desk, where it has been for the past year or so.

In August, Dickerson, 44, joined KSLA's marketing department. Last week, when a desk was being cleaned out, the ring was found. Dickerson took it to Copeland.