CLARA CITY, Minn. (WCCO) — It seems there are still plenty of people who live their lives by the golden rule: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
A Clara City man is evidence of that after a hunting jacket he thought was long gone was returned four years later.
Wrenching on vehicles is Owen Schipnewski’s profession, but bird hunting is his passion. In the fall of 2009 he took his 12-year-old son goose hunting in the Lac qui Parle Wildlife Management Area in western Minnesota.
And for 25 years he’s worn the same Cabella’s Gortex camouflaged hunting jacket in the duck and goose blinds.
“Before we left, I took the jacket off and threw it in the back of the pickup,” Schipnewski said. “Then we proceeded to go out to the field to go goose hunting.”
What Schipnewski didn’t realize is that his jacket blew out of the truck and onto the road. He backtracked but it was to no avail. The jacket was gone.
Not only was the jacket gone, but so too was his wallet, along with his driver’s license, credit cards and $1,700 in cash.
As the years passed, Schipnewski though he’d seen the last of that favorite duck hunting jacket, along with his wallet and that big wad of cash.
Then, earlier this month, the auto mechanic suddenly got a phone call he never expected.
On the other end was a local farmer, Trent Jorgenson. Turns out he had found the jacket and brought it home where it hung in his garage. Not being much of a duck hunter he had little use for it and never bothered to search the hidden inner pockets where Schipnewski’s wallet was buried.
As it turns out, Jorgenson’s wife actually found the wallet when she was going to run it through the washing machine. Jorgenson had been invited to go hunting with some old friends and needed the jacket to wear.
But when the discovery was made there was no hesitation what he would do: return it to its rightful owner.
“Everything was in that jacket,” says Schipnewski when he got it back.
He then drove to western Minnesota where Jorgenson farms to get the jacket and thank the farmer personally. Schipnewski was so happy to get it back he offered Jorgenson a large cash reward, but he turned down the money.
“There are a lot of good people in this world, that’s for sure,” said said Schipnewski.
It’s a simple little lesson we can all live by.
Schipnewski added: “Four years later, I get the jacket back and hopefully a new friend.”