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Bracelet found, 35 miles away as a crow flies

Tom Johnson couldn't believe it Thursday when his wife read him the morning newspaper.

He had found a gold bracelet Oct. 16 in a Publix parking lot that sounded a lot like the one she was reading about.

The one stolen from a golf cart 35 miles away the same day Johnson made his discovery.

The one stolen by a crow.

"The story was strange enough to begin with," said Johnson, from his home at Cove Cay condominiums in Clearwater. "But when I realized I had the bracelet, I thought it was impossible."

It wasn't.

Frank Landstrom said he was preparing to make an approach shot into the 12th green at Oak Hills golf course in Spring Hill when a crow plucked his $450 14-karat bracelet from the cart.

Later that afternoon and two counties away, 68-year-old Johnson pulled into the supermarket parking lot at Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard and Belcher Road and noticed a bracelet next to his front tire.

Johnson gave his phone number to the Publix manager and told him to call if anyone came looking for the bracelet. No one called. Then on Thursday morning Johnson listened in disbelief as his wife read the story in the Times.

Crows can fly 35 miles, but usually not with something in their beaks, said Steve Fickett, former Hernando Audubon Society president.

"There's not much point for a crow to carry a bracelet that far," Fickett said. The crow could have dropped the bracelet before another bird picked it up and flew farther south, he said.

Johnson called the Landstroms in Dunedin. He asked them to describe the bracelet. Mrs. Landstrom's description matched almost exactly. He invited the couple to pick it up.

Landstrom offered a reward. Johnson refused it.

"There are still some good people left out there," Landstrom said.

Johnson had his own motives.

"I didn't want the money," he said. "I already had a great story to tell."