Boy, 6, reunites Hawaii Island man with class ring after 18 years

David Kiddler, left, and Max Germond (Photo: Philip Bolek)

Eighteen years ago, a Hawaii Island man thought he had lost his class ring forever.

That all changed, thanks to a six-year-old boy.

In 1997, David Kiddler was a senior at Konawaena High School. He had his class ring for just a few weeks when he decided to squeeze in a body boarding session at Banyans, a popular surf spot in Kailua-Kona.

“It was the day after senior prom and I had to go to work, but I wanted to get a couple waves in,” he said.

Kiddler said the ring fell off as soon as he hit the water and, given the conditions, he couldn’t search for it.

“It was in a bad area and there was a lot of surf at the time. It would have been dangerous,” he said.

Kiddler admitted he thought about it every now and then, but accepted it was gone.

Earlier this month, six-year-old Max Germond was in that same area, helping a friend search for his lost fin. The search turned up both the fin and the ring.

“The ring was in such good condition, we could still read that it was from Konawaena class of 1997 and his name was engraved inside,” said Germond’s dad, Philip Bolek.

Bolek and Germond found Kiddler on Facebook. The three met the very next day.

Kiddler said aside from some coral growth, the ring was in mint condition.

“I’m pretty happy about it. Even though I didn’t have it that long before I lost it, it’s something from that time. It’s really nice of them to look me up,” he said. “I’m going to get it cleaned and fixed, and then it will go in a glass case,” he said. “I’m not losing it again.”

Bolek called the meeting “priceless.”

“Seeing David’s smile, knowing we were teaching Max a very valuable life lesson, and just the feeling in our own hearts was incredible, and a feeling we are still feeling,” he said. “When you do the right thing and live pono, you will always have a reason to smile and know that you are doing good for yourself and for those around you.”

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