In the late 1960s, Vicki Cooper's parents, who lived in Palo Alto, California, took a trip to Las Vegas. During the trip, they drove out to Pahrump, about 60 miles west of Las Vegas, to see what was out there. There wasn't much then, maybe a few hundred people, compared with almost 40,000 today.
"Dad, who liked to browse, went into a junk/pawn shop to look around," said Vicki, recalling the story her mother told her. "He saw this ring with the HRH initials and immediately thought of Howard Hughes, who was big at the time in Las Vegas, and he had to have it. Mom said she thought it was stupid but he bought it and it couldn't have been more than a couple of bucks."
When her parents returned home, the ring was tossed in a jewelry box and forgotten about. A couple of years ago, Vicki and her mother were going through some stuff and came across the ring. Vicki asked about it and her mother told her the story.
Vicki can only speculate as to whether the ring belonged to Howard Robard Hughes (HRH) and, if so, how it ended up in a junk store in Pahrump.
"My guess would be, if it is Hughes' ring, that he gave it to someone who perhaps gave him a lift, bought him some food or did something for him and this was the only way to repay that person," Vicki said.
It is true that Hughes did not like to carry cash around with him, so if he did find himself in such a situation, he may have had to come up another means of payment.
That said, all the scenarios seem unlikely. Did Hughes even wear jewelry? Is so, would he have had a ring like this one? And if he did, how likely would it be for the ring to end up in a junk store in tiny Pahrump?
The question for today is whether anyone out there has any information or informed speculation about the origins or history of this ring. Does "HRH" logically stand for something completely different? If you believe you can shed any light at all, please comment on this item and we'll see where things go.