MURFREESBORO, Ark. (KATV) — Josh Lanik, a 36-year-old school teacher from Hebron, Nebraska, recently visited the Crater of Diamonds State Park on a family vacation and found a brandy-colored gem weighing just over two carats, the park said in a press release.
Lanik said he was searching near the park’s 37.5-acre diamond search area when he picked up the diamond.
He was 15 feet from the West Drain, a trench that runs along the western border of the park’s diamond search area, the release says.
At first, Lanik wasn’t sure of what he found, but knew it was something unique.
“It was blatantly obvious there was something different about it. I saw the shine, and when I picked it up and rolled it in my hand, I noticed there weren’t any sharp edges.”
He showed the gem to his wife, dropped it into a brown paper sack with several other rocks and minerals.
Before leaving the park, the family stopped by the Diamond Discovery Center to have their findings identified.
“She wouldn’t tell us whether it was a diamond, but we were pretty sure from her reaction that it was.”
After identifying and weighing the gem, park staff brought Lanik into the office and informed him that he had discovered the largest diamond found so far in 2019.
According to park interpreter WaymonCox, “Mr. Lanik’s gem is about the size of a jellybean and has a dark brown color, similar to brandy. It has a beautiful natural pear shape and smooth, curved facets that give the gem a metallic shine.”
When asked whether he plans to sell his gem or keep it as a souvenir, Lanik said he plans to keep it, for now.