We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Ray and John RTÉ Radio 1
four decades later

Ray D'Arcy reunites man with his late wife's bracelet that went missing in the 1970s

John Leen from Killarney in Co Kerry gave the piece of jewellery to his wife Íde in 1964.

THERE WAS A special moment on The Ray D’Arcy Show today when the host reunited a man with his late wife’s bracelet that had been missing since the 1970s.

The bracelet was sent into the radio show in March, with an anonymous note asking for the owner to be found.

After a photo of it was shared online, a man got in touch to say he believed it was the same piece of jewellery his father had given to his mother in the 1960s.

As it turns out, it was indeed the bracelet John Leen from Killarney in Co Kerry gave to his wife Íde more than 50 years ago, in 1964.

Speaking to D’Arcy in studio today, John (81) said he isn’t entirely sure but thinks he gave Íde the bracelet after the birth of one of their three children. He got it engraved ‘From John to Íde’, but the jeweller incorrectly spelled her name ‘Eda’.

I can still remember her being very pleased with it but when she turned it over and she looked at the engraving, [she said:] ‘Ah look at the way he spelled my name’, but that never mattered to her afterward. She was delighted to have it.

John said it was his wife’s favourite piece of jewellery and had great sentimental value. She lost it in the 1970s or very early 1980s.

Íde was a home economics teacher and one of the theories was she lost the bracelet while baking, but John said she was never sure what happened to it.

When she realised it was missing, John said she reacted “nearly like the crown jewels had been lost”.

‘A remarkable woman’

Íde developed rheumatoid arthritis and John, a former garda, eventually became her carer. He described his wife as “a wonderful patient” and “a remarkable woman”.

The pair had three children together – two daughters, Niamh and Orla and a son, Colm. Niamh died four years ago tomorrow.

John said he has a theory about who sent the bracelet in, but didn’t want to go into detail, simply saying: “I hope that they have a long and great life.”

Read: Drone flew close to Aer Lingus plane in Paris

Read: A breakthrough battery that can last you a lifetime has been developed

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.