Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Woman, Barber, Goat Have Story with a Familiar Ring - Shannon's

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Woman, Barber, Goat Have Story with a Familiar Ring - Shannon's

Article excerpt

Jacqueline Thompson never expected to be a ring bearer for Mike Shannon. She never had met him until Wednesday.

And she never heard of the Cardinals broadcaster and former star until weeks after she found his 1964 World Series ring last winter outside a Clayton movie theater.

"I'm really not a baseball fan," said Thompson, a security officer for Whelan Security from East St. Louis. "I like it in person but not on television."

Shannon likes his ring but not so where you'd notice it. This was the fourth time he's lost and found it.

Thompson takes a recovery spot of honor alongside a barber, a goat and Shannon himself on Interstate 70.

The elusive bauble first tried to escape in 1965, as Shannon barreled home on I-70 after a game.

"My fingers were swollen from playing," he said, "and the ring was jammed on there. So I tried to take it off while I was driving."

The force of pulling the ring off threw it out his opened window.

"I could see it in the rearview mirror," he said. "The son of a gun was bouncing up and down on the highway, hitting car hoods and radiators."

Shannon stopped, backtracked and retrieved the ring.

"It wasn't bent out of round," he said, "but it was all scratched up."

He had the ring polished up, and wore it without incident for several more years.

Then, having stashed the ring in his coat for a manicure at his barber's, Shannon unknowingly flipped it out of the pocket as he reached for his car keys. The barber saw the mishap, ran out and found the ring.

"It was only gone for about 10 minutes that time," Shannon said.

About 10 years ago, a goat got into the act. Shannon had bought the beast for his daughter, Erin.

"I guess I left the ring lying around the house," Shannon said, "and maybe one of the kids took it outside. Those goats will eat anything shiny."

Shannon learned the identity of the thief accidentally one day by ear.

"I was walking past the goat," he said, "and I heard this ping, ping, ping on the driveway.

"It was really shiny," Shannon said, sounding like zoo keeper Charlie Hoessle, "because of all the acid in that goat's stomach and wherever."

He avoided further catastrophes until January or early February, after catching a movie at the Esquire. …

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