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For Stump the chumps

I have a 1997 Mercury Cougar 3.8L. with 95K miles. Recently on a highway trip the engine started clattering loudly, I immediately pulled off the road and had the car towed to a Ford dealer in Indianapolis, In. After several hours of checking the oil pump pressure, compression, lifters, push rods, and other assorted hardware a visiting Ford engineer discovered the source of the clattering, (ie. clanging, banging, screeching, and no it was not my wife noise). What under five dollar fix repaired my car?

Was it a loose heat shield?