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Posted on Tuesday, June 22 - 2004

" Mildred Price of Jennings loves to collect art and odd or unusual items. She also loves flowers and the look of a well-manicured lawn. She spends a lot of time keeping her yard in great shape. So on a warm day in July 1982, Price was working in the yard of her boarding house in midtown St. L..."

Mildred Price of Jennings loves to collect art and odd or unusual items. She also loves flowers and the look of a well-manicured lawn. She spends a lot of time keeping her yard in great shape. So on a warm day in July 1982, Price was working in the yard of her boarding house in midtown St. Louis and happened to rake over an unusual rock. She said it was brownish-black, semi-oblong and smooth. It fit in the palm of her hand. She picked it up. It was solid and weighty. As she stood admiring the rock, a man who worked for her noticed her looking at the rock and walked over to take a look. He told her that she needed to keep it because it was aspecial rock: a rock that grows.

Price, 74, now retired after working as a private-duty nurse, thought that sounded strange. Nevertheless, being a collector of unusual items, she put the rock in her yard and close to the fence. And that's where it stayed for about five years. She says that in those years, she would check on the rock from time to time, and to her amazement, it would appear to be getting bigger. Price, a mother of four and grandmother, shared with her family and close friends the tale of the growing rock. She was reluctant to talk about it to anyone else. "I didn't want to tell anyone else, because I didn't want people to think I was going insane," she said. "If I told someone, they wouldhave thought something was wrong with me." Audrey Farrar, Price's older daughter, says her mother didn't talk to anybody about the rock because her mother probably was skeptical. "We have all watched it grow over the years," says Farrar. "It wasn't like it was growing while you looked at it. It was like, from time to time you would see it and say, 'Well, yeah, OK.' I just wish that we had taken measurements of it before now, because everybody just thinks we are crazy." Bill Brooks, a longtime family friend, says he has witnessed the rock's growth. "When I first saw it, it was sitting in the corner of the yard," said Brooks. "It was a little rock, and over the yearsit's. ...

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