Widow who dropped wedding ring into Salvation Army kettle identified

A West Texas widow who anonymously donated her late husband's ring at a Salvation Army red kettle has come forward and the ring has been returned to her.

The Salvation Army began looking for her after she dropped the ring along with a note in the kettle Monday. A man who was moved by her action offered a replacement donation if the ring appraised at $250 could be returned to her.

The note attached to the ring was one of her late husband’s favorite expressions: Don’t take any wooden nickels. The Salvation Army determined it was indeed her ring after she told them the message.

Shelie Bravo Williams, who identified herself Thursday, told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal that she gave the ring a kiss when she dropped it in the kettle, thinking she would never see it again.

"I gave the ring a kiss when I dropped it in the kettle, thinking I would never see it again, but I knew it was going to benefit the Salvation Army and those that they help," Williams told the paper.

Williams says her late husband died of cancer in 2006. She finds a way each Christmas season to pay tribute to his memory. This year, she said she didn’t have enough money to donate, so she decided to drop the ring into the kettle.

She was given the ring on their first Christmas together, The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal reported.

"God never puts us through things we can't handle. We’re meant to learn from the experiences that God puts us through, and we're then given the opportunity to pay it forward to someone else in their time of need," she told the paper.

The Associated Press contributed to this report