Stolen watch resurfaces after 20 years; man's spirit is timeless

Stolen watch resurfaces after 20 years; man's spirit is timeless

NEAR TOLEDO, Wash. – Two decades after Moe St. Jean's gold watch was stolen it was found along the roadside just outside his home.

Two months ago his stepson found the watch after a grader passed by, scooping away years of dirt and uncovering the watch.

"And he said, 'Dad, I found your watch.' And he said, 'The bracelet's gotta be pretty close by.' And I said, 'Well, the way the machinery's been going by you ain't gonna find that,'" Moe said.

But his stepson went and did find it.

Moe hadn't even gotten to wear the gold watch he'd been given by Weyerhaeuser in 1988 for 25 years of service before it was stolen in a burglary.

Moe believes the burglar dropped the watch as he fled. He later learned the thief was a neighbor's son. Moe never turned the boy in. He forgave him instead and never worried about whether he'd get that watch back again.

"You know, my philosophy is 'what goes around, comes around,'" he said Tuesday. "It's gone, it's gone. That's it. And somebody, somewhere is looking out for me also. I don't know."

Moe first realized the stuff that was taken in that burglary years ago was popping up around town when he found his knife for sale in Toledo.

Even though the watch was found in a few pieces, Moe said he might try to get the watch fixed but he doesn’t know if they make parts for it anymore.

Then again this is Moe.

"Don't ever tell me what I can't do. Don't ever say I can't do this," he said.

It means as long as Moe's still ticking time hasn't run out on his special watch.

Moe also got another watch for 35 years working at that Longview paper plant. After what happened to his gold watch he doesn't take the newer one off much just to make sure it stays in a safe place.