February 1, 2000

Martin Sheffield
Independent Gemmological Services, Inc.
137 Rodeo Drive
Thornhill, Ontario

Bryan Cheeseman
Post-doctoral Fellow
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Delaware
Newark DE 19711

Dear Martin,

My fiancé Brenda and I want to express our deepest gratitude for your assistance and your reassurance throughout the process of finding and purchasing what is truly a magnificent diamond. As I said when we last spoke, you run a first class operation. From our initial contact, through your CERT search, which came up with exactly, and I mean exactly, what I was looking for, to the financial portion of the transaction, everything was handled with the utmost care and concern. You made me feel like I was your only customer, which is remarkable because I knew you were swamped! I really appreciated that. Brenda and I are thankful for everything you did to make our Christmas the most special one we have ever had.

Speaking of Christmas, I am sorry for the tardiness of the letter. I had promised to write to tell you how everything went. Well, since the holidays are such a hectic time with family gatherings and all, Brenda and I decided to have our own special evening on the 23rd. We had an elegant candlelight dinner at her place (lobster bisque, clams casino, lobsters and a nice pinot grigio-Chardonnay) and afterwards we went to the living room to exchange presents by the lights of the Christmas tree. I opened my presents first and I could tell she really had no idea what was coming. I had gotten her a few other gifts to throw her off track. I had taken the ring (I had the diamond mounted in a classic six prong platinum Tiffany setting) and taped it in between the cotton batting of a gift box that one usually uses for a necklace or watch. So I made sure she opened the other presents first. I must admit, I did get that nervous pit in my stomach when I handed her that box and she looked at me curiously, wondering what it was. When she unwrapped it, she definitely had no clue. She actually looked at the long box and said "I have no idea what this is…" Then she opened it. And saw nothing but the cotton batting. I must say that my heart was pounding about now. "What is it?" she said. I replied, "Well, you have to look a bit more…" So she did. She lifted the top layer of the cotton and saw the ring, lying on its side, taped to the bottom layer of cotton. Hell, she didn't even pick it up. She just looked up at me with her eyes as big as saucers (filling with tears, too) and came over and embraced me. Of course, I said some corny stuff, and thankfully, she said "Yes". But then she came back to the box and the ring, which she hadn't bothered to really look at. She peeled off the tape and picked up the ring… Martin, the only lights on in the room were the ones on the Christmas tree. In that dark room, that diamond caught those Christmas lights and looked like a fireworks display. It was unbelievable. The FIRST thing she said was "I have never seen a diamond so beautiful!" Even today, I still catch myself just staring at the diamond on her finger.

Many, many thanks!!!

PS. Feel free to give out my e-mail address to anyone who may want to contact me about IGS, cheesema@me.udel.edu.
PPS. Funny thing, I went to an independent gemologist and appraiser in this area, Linda Raymond, and met another one of your customers! He had purchased a Hearts and Arrows stone from you, too, and was very happy. Linda (she's great, I highly recommend her) was really excited when she graded the stone and was astounded when I told her how much it cost. She congratulated me and said that I really did a good job….but I think a lot of the congratulations belong to you. The ring appraised for 75% more than I paid for the stone.