Bill McDougall, Author at The Ring Finders

Rome (Maine) lost i phone

Received a call from Warren who found me through Ringfinders concerning a lost phone.  He stated he placed an ipad and phone on his car roof top then left before retrieving them. He realized it a mile or so down the camp road. The ipad was still there but no phone. He immediately started searching.A short time later received a notice on the ipad that his phone had triggered a 911 call. The sheriff dept checked the area out and no accident.The phone tower triangulation address did not exist and was accurate only within hundreds of yards. After two days calling the phone day and night (driving the camp road with no lights) He and his neighbor still had not found it. When I arrived I started at the beginning where the phone was placed on the roof and began a slow search in my truck. The leaves are hard this time of years and a cell phone won’t bury itself under them . I focused on any object or terrain feature that could hide a phone. They had already walked the whole route twice. After 20 or so stops and investigations, brush piles ,culverts, fallen evergreen branches,  I found an area with 6 to 8 inch shrubs that the leaves were leaning against. Sweep them with the metal detector and found the phone. It was 3/4 buried under the leaves but not visible from the road. It was also well short of the 911 search area. Warren and I were both happy for sure.  The phone still had 41 percent battery after 50 plus missed calls!

Garland Maine ring lost for 5 years found

I was recently contacted by Justin about a ring lost a “couple years”ago. I told him I would be happy to help him out.I took the couple years to be two and felt it would be a fairly easy recovery.  Once on site I started the questioning of how it was lost.  He was in the passenger seat with the wife having a” discussion”. The ring came off and was” tossed “out the window. The exact spot in the driveway was unclear. Time passed and memory. The first day I spent two hours and covered what I could. The terrain was hostile to say the least. previous home owners had a lot of burns. The soils were full of miscellaneous metals. Even large sheets 4x6pieces of sheet metal half buried.. No easy recovery for sure.

On the second day, I focused on where the vehicle may have been. Justin and I tossed small stones as though being “tossed” out a vehicle window. Turns out, most of the throws ended more behind and to the side of the vehicle. I searched a second time, pulling all solid signals out. Still no luck. After two hours, I was calling it a day. Justin mentioned he had raked while searching for this ring and burned the leaves. I decided to check charred areas one more time. Still no luck, having decided to call it quits until more cleanup could occur. While walking back to my truck, swinging the detector, I got a solid signal at the base of a large tree. Not the number I was looking for, yet dug it anyway. A large piece of aluminum foil AND a second signal, FINALLY the RING!

After the happy reunion with his ring, Justin stated that ring was “tossed” in 2018…. a “couple of years” turned out to be 5!




lost ring Bangor Maine found and returned

One week ago a lady reached out to me for help finding her husband’s ring. Prior to calling me, she had posted on Facebook requesting help and had a map of where she thought it might have been lost. She sent me the Facebook link that included three streets highlighted.  I replied that I would be glad to help, however, more information would be helpful.  What was happening on that day?  Riding a bike? jogging? driving?   While waiting for her reply, I walked the sidewalks of the highlighted streets. The next day the husband called. He stated he had been moving from one house to another 1.7 miles away. He had removed his ring and placed it on the right fender of his truck. I went to the house and there was a small loam area that had been raked and searched as well as a circular stone drive way. I detected all of that and then went onto the street. I covered the area on the right shoulder of the ‘highlighted streets”. I estimated it to be half a mile.   The next day I searched the yard for a second time. I called the husband and went over the time line again. I learned the truck was at the second house. This is where  he first noticed he was missing the ring was .  I also walked the shoulder of the street about a mile .  On the third day I went to the second house and searched the truck with no luck.  Finally, I said I am going to walk back so I have at least covered the whole route. Just a little distance from the second house there was the ring sitting real close to a storm drain.  It had traveled 1.6 mile on the fender of the truck!!!!  A few days later I was able to drop it off at their office. I never got to meet them but I am sure they were happy to get the ring back. It did suffer some damage while in the wild.  I think it must have been run over at least twice.    Bill

lost ring brewer maine found and returned

.This afternoon a gentleman called about a ring he lost four days ago. He lost it in a really huge field on his daily walk after work.  He had placed his ring in his pocket and later on the walk placed his shirt in the same pocket.  He was pretty sure the ring came out when he removed his shirt.  The story sounded logical .  We walked about a mile out into this field to an area where he usually puts his shirt back on. He was uncertain exactly where but somewhere within 50 square yards!! I detected and keep talking to him about that day .  He seemed more uncertain as time went by. I told him that was normal . He wasn’t expecting someone to grill him over all the details of his relaxing walk. We moved on back out to another area he frequently replaced his shirt, again no ring. He thought it was useless being such a huge area and I said lets just work our way out kinda slow .  At one spot he starts to go through a real wet area. I said wouldn’t you have gone up around the corner.  He said maybe and headed for the corner.  I keep right behind him swinging like crazy.  thirty yards further and I see the circle of gold.  I placed my foot over it and said “Hey come back here for a sec.” He came back and I said this this what a gold ring sounds like as I swung the coil over my foot.  I don’t think he realized what was happening as I moved my foot and passed the coil over the ring. He just stared at his ring .It seemed like a long time but I am sure it was just a few seconds before he finally he picked it up.  He was just speechless.  I’m smiling like crazy and he gives me a bear hug!!!!!All the way back he kept saying he just couldn’t believe it.   I am a little surprised as well .I guess the ring must have been caught in the shirt somehow.  Lady luck was with me for certain tonight..   Bill

lost ring in woods found and returned Milo maine

After seeing a facebook article about a ring return I did, a man contacted me about a ring lost in the woods. On youth day last year a father and son were at his camp hunting. The young man was successful .They dragged the deer to a four wheeler trail. the father removed his ring giving it to the young man so the father could dress the deer. They placed the deer on the four wheeler and returned to camp.When the father asked for his ring they realized it was last seen on the fender of the four wheeler. The camp owner rented a metal detector but it just keep beeping at him!!!   I made my way to the camp and to where the deer had been loaded on to the four wheeler. Working on one side of the road I started recovering surface targets.  I expected to find it within a few feet but it managed to stay on the fender for about 70 yards.I recovered it next to three shell casings. I happen to pick the correct side of the road .  Today I returned the ring to the camp owner who had contacted me. I understand a father is in for quite a surprise tonight.     Bill

lost ring Brewer Maine found and returned


Early in February I was told that a woman posted on Craiglist that she had lost her wedding rings.  The ad stated she lost her rings of 44 years in an earlier snowstorm at one of five local store parking lots. I reached out to the woman through craiglist and said I was a ringfinder, she could check me out at and if she could show me where she was parked on these five huge lots (one was a walmart and the others were grocery stores) perhaps in the spring I could find her ring. I needed this information to determine where the snow from these areas was plowed. She answered that she only remembered one store where she was parked.  I already knew where this store moved all their snow …across the street after every storm. Through the next four or five weeks I kinda kept a eye on the piles of snow as they grew larger and larger. We’ve had a lot of snow this year! Around the first week of march some of the snow melting started. Three times I drove to all five locations and walked around all the piles of snow. The wife and and doctor say walking is good for everything, so I walk. Now I find myself walking around parking lots. Near the first of April my wife and I were on a walk and going around one of the parking lots,  we made a competition out of it, to see who could find the most coins.   You can guess who always found the most. I am concentrating on finding pennies when …..    there was a ring!! I was real surprised. As soon as I got home I reached out to this lady through craiglist and received a message that the ad had expired! The next couple days I searched every lost and found I could imagine. I placed an ad in craiglist searching for the person who lost a ring this past winter. Another week goes by and nothing. I checked with the service desks in three of the stores, the police department in the town where four of the stores are located and nothing. Finally last Saturday I check  with the police department in the town  the last store was located in.  They were closed, only an emergency phone available. Monday, late in the afternoon, I stopped again . I repeated my story, for what seemed to be the tenth time, to two ladies behind the bullet proof window. One instantly lights up and started looking through index cards . She remembered the lady !!!!.  She found the card, took my information and said she would give it to the lady.  Finally yesterday I got the call! We meet in the lot where the ring was found and I returned it.  The woman and her husband had thought the rings were gone for good.  They had contacted all the stores and reported it lost, as well as filling out an incident report with two police departments. So, I guess so much time had passed that all their reports were lost except for one!  The couple were very happy for sure! Her smile says it all!!











Beach recovery two rings

  • from Brewer (Maine, United States)

Received a text from John regarding three rings lost on a beach one hour south of me.  Definitely out of my area but another ringfinder who was unable to do the search recommended me .My first thoughts were of a storm off shore which were going to give the coast some big wave action and if these rings were above the wave line or not. I called John immediately and He said he was on the beach searching . I said I would be an hour .   The area was above the usual tide /wave area and John had recovered one ring before I arrived.  First sweep produced a great signal that proved to be the second ring.  Fifth swing was another that was the third.  Less than two minutes.  John was surprised I think and very thankful.  Here are pics of the rings .       Bill


Giant silver ring

  • from Brewer (Maine, United States)

In February, I believe, a young man contacted me about a lost ring.  He found my information on ringfinders. He lost the ring shoveling snow.  I told him we would have to wait until snow melt this spring.  Today I traveled the 80 miles to him. Once there I was worried that I was too soon. He lived in an apartment complex with lots of parking and parking lot.  There were still snow piles of three feet or more. I thought I might as well do everything I could now and may have to come back later. The young man “Will” stayed with me the whole time moving trash and debris out of the way as I uncovered it.  Will stated that his ring was large like two ounces of silver.  I mentioned that was like eight quarters worth of silver and he said yes that big….  I took eight quarters and put then on the ground and the deus would overload passing over them, raising it showed a 98 on the screen.    Two and a half hours into the hunt with 95 percent of the available ground covered ,I was planning my next trip. One more spot behind a dumpster. On my final pass I saw the round outline just as the coil passed over it . It overloaded . I scoped it into my hand and stopped ..I said that ‘s it I ‘m done.  I knelt down and started shutting the machine down. I said “Know why I am stopping?”  Will said “because your batteries are dead?” and I said “No because of this,” as I opened my hand. The surprise look is always great . It is a huge ring .  Here are the pics .   Bill