ARKLATEX (KSLA) - Just in time for Valentine's Day, a Shreveport man hit the jackpot at the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro, Arkansas.
Dean Filppula dug up at 2 carat yellow diamond 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.
According to Cox, other visitors from Shreveport have also found large diamonds at the park. In June 2007, Milton Milam discovered a 4.80-carat white diamond while wet sifting soil at the park. Back in June 1981, Carroll Blankenship took home the second largest diamond ever found by a park visitor since the Crater of Diamonds became an Arkansas state park in 1972. Blankenship named his stunning 8.82-carat white diamond the Star of Shreveport.
The search area at the Crater of Diamonds is a 37 ½-acre plowed field that is the eroded surface of the eighth largest diamond-bearing deposit in the world, in surface area. It is the world's only diamond-producing site open to the public. In addition to diamonds, semi-precious gems and minerals are found in the park's search area including amethyst, garnet, peridot, jasper, agate, calcite, barite, and quartz. Over 40 different rocks and minerals are unearthed at the Crater.
The park's policy is finder-keepers. What park visitors find is theirs to keep. The park staff provides free identification and registration of diamonds. Park interpretive programs and exhibits explain the site's geology and history, and offer tips on recognizing diamonds in the rough.
Filppula plans on selling his diamond.
For more information about the Crater of Diamonds State Park, please visit their website.