HELENA- The Helena Salvation Army has a Secret Santa.

A generous anonymous donor this week dropped a diamond ring into one of the Army’s red kettles.

It’s a valuable gift that will bring blessings long after Christmas.

“Someone giving something from their heart or their past and it’s kind of amazing,” says Helena Salvation Army Captain Rob Lawler.

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On Wednesday a diamond ring wrapped in a $20.00 bill was dropped off at the Salvation Army’s kettle station at the North Montana Albertsons.

“We carefully took the tape off and to find this gold ring that was in it, it has about a half a carat of real diamonds in it in a gold band,” says Captain Lawler.

Lawler says this is a first for his career.

“It’s kind of amazing. We love when people put in a couple dollar bills in, but when someone puts in something like this – it must have meant something to them at one point, so it’s like giving a part of them.”

Each year the army looks to raise $75,000.00 from its kettles. Those donations pay for food boxes, rental and utility assistance and transitional housing.

“We help about 7,000 people a year in our community,” says Lawler.

This Christmas the Army has had trouble finding volunteers for the kettle campaign.

“I think today we have four whole bell ringers out and we have about 16 locations,” says the Captain.

But donations like this bring a boost to the army’s morale.

“The ring was appraised at insurance value of about a thousand dollars,” says Lawler.

“Just very generous and we’re very thankful for that donation.”

Some generous soul gave up this treasure to bless others.

That’s a true Christmas story.

“Someone gave something of their personal history, their personal being,” says Lawler.

“Just thank you, and I’d love to hear the story.”

You still have time to volunteer as a bell-ringer. Call the Army at 442-8244.

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