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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

For the first time in 25 years, Mike Sabatino is wearing his class ring again.

Sabatino, who graduated from Manatee High School in 1987, just got his ring back after losing it when he was a teen.

"I didn't realize how much it meant to me until I got it back and actually put it on," said Sabatino. "It brought back a lot of good memories from high school."

Sabatino lost the ring during a fight while at a Ted Nugent concert at the Lakeland Civic Center.

"During the song 'Cat Scratch Fever,' there's a group of guys that decided they didn't like me or something and kinda roughed me up pretty good," said Sabatino.

Sabatino said he thought the ring was gone forever.

Little did he know, someone from that concert would find the ring and keep it.

"When Cosmo Wilson, a stage hand, was breaking down stage, he saw it and picked it up," said Sabatino. "He kept it all of these years."

Wilson, who found the ring, said he didn't want to throw it away, because he knew it meant something to somebody.

Years later, on a whim, he decided to post a description of the ring on Facebook to try and find its owner. It worked.

"I got a Facebook message from someone I didn't know asking me if I was Mike Sabatino's sister," said Wendy Sabatino. "Someone had found a ring and contacted the Manatee page on Facebook."

Sabatino's sister said after reading the message, she immediately knew it belonged to her brother.

Sabatino was able to identify the ring because it had his initials on it and adorned a cross country and track symbol.

Shortly after, he had his ring back.

Sabatino is now prouder than ever to be wearing the ring again after all these years. He still has not met up with the man that found it.

Cosmo Wilson travels all over the world as a lighting director, working with rock and roll bands like Rolling Stones and Foreigner.

The two still communicate and are trying to meet up soon.


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