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A 33-year-old Arkansas man found a 9-carat diamond at a state park he's been visiting since he was a child

INSIDER logoINSIDER 9/26/2020 insider@insider.com (Taylor Ardrey)
a man holding a hot dog in a park: In this photo Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, photo provided by The Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism, is Kevin Kinard, with a 9.07 carat diamond he found at Crater of Diamonds State Park on Sept, 7, 2020, in Murfreesboro, Ark. Waymon Cox/Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism via AP © Waymon Cox/Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism via AP In this photo Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, photo provided by The Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism, is Kevin Kinard, with a 9.07 carat diamond he found at Crater of Diamonds State Park on Sept, 7, 2020, in Murfreesboro, Ark. Waymon Cox/Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism via AP
  • A 33-year-old man found a 9.07-carat diamond at Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas on September 7, the Associated Press reported. 
  • Instead of wet sifting, Kevin Kinard decided to look for diamonds on the surface.
  • During his search, he discovered a "marble-sized crystal" with a "rounded, dimpled shape" that he thought was glass, according to a news release by Arkansas State Parks.
  • Park employees later identified Kinard's findings as a 9.07 diamond, the second-largest diamond found in the park since 1972. 
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

A 33-year-old Arkansas bank teller found the second-largest diamond at a state park earlier this month, according to the Associated Press.

According to a news release by Arkansas State Parks, Kevin Kinard found the 9.07-carat diamond at Crater of Diamonds State Park on September 7. The news release said that Kinard is a frequent visitor to the park and has been searching for diamonds since he was a child, but never came across one.

Kinard went to the park with friends prepared to wet sift — an easier method to discover a diamond in the dirt— but instead decided to look for gems on the surface, the news release said.

"I only wet sifted for about 10 minutes before I started walking up and down the plowed rows," Kinard said, according to the news release. "Anything that looked like a crystal, I picked it up and put it in my bag."

During his search in the southeast area of the park, Kinard found a "marble-sized crystal" with a "rounded, dimpled shape" that he thought "might've been glass" and placed it in his bag, according to the news release.

Following a long day at the park, Kinard and his friends arrived at the Diamond Discovery Center, where employees of the park assist visitors with the materials they found, the news release said.

"I almost didn't have them check my finds, because I didn't think I had found anything," Kinard said, according to the release. "My friend had hers checked, though, so I went ahead and had them check mine, too."

Kinard said he was in "complete shock" when park staff identified that his finding was the 9.07 diamond, which is the second-largest diamond found in the park since 1972. A superintendent of the park said that "conditions" were perfect for Kinard's findings.

"Park staff plowed the search area on August 20, just a few days before Tropical Storm Laura dropped more than two inches of rain in the park," assistant superintendent Dru Edmonds said in the news release. "The sun was out when Mr. Kinard visited, and he walked just the right path to notice the sunlight reflecting off his diamond." 

Kinard registered the diamond as "Kinard Friendship Diamond," as an ode to his friends, according to the news release.

"We love to travel together and had such a great time out here," Kinard said. "It was a very humbling experience."

The actual worth of the diamond isn't clear, but the park told People a 3.03-carat white gem that was found by a female visitor in 1990 was eventually cut into 1.09 carats and sold in 1998 for $34,700, meaning Kinard's "could be worth thousands," the outlet reported.

"I'm not sure what it's worth, but I can't do anything with a 9-carat diamond," Kinard told Good Morning America. "My boss said, 'You may be a millionaire. Are you going to quit?' I said, 'Absolutely not.' I'm too young for that. I'd still work. I'm just a regular guy."

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