Dean Filppula, an offshore steward from Shreveport, Louisiana, became aware of Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park about a year ago when searching online for places to search for gems.
He recently learned that the park‘s 37-acre search field -- the eroded surface of an ancient, diamond-bearing deposit -- had just been plowed by the park staff.
This regular endeavor loosens the diamond-bearing soil which, along with rain erosion, brings more diamonds to the surface and helps park visitors’ chances of finding them.
Coinciding perfectly with his vacation, the rains came and Filppula headed to the park to try his luck. His planning paid off when he found a yellow, 2.01-carat diamond last Tuesday afternoon in the West Drain of the search area.
According to Park interpreter Waymon Cox, the sparkling, light yellow stone is wedge-shaped and about the size of an English pea. Filppula named his stone the Merf Diamond after his mother’s initials. He plans to sell his diamond.
“Mr. Filppula‘s story is familiar to so many of our park visitors who have found large diamonds in the past. More than half an inch of rain had fallen two days before his visit, washing loose soil from the surface of the diamond search area, and, no doubt, uncovering the large, yellow gem,” said Cox.
“Anyone could have found it, but Mr. Filppula was in the right place at the right time. We are very happy for him.”