Brian Rudolph, Lost Item Recovery Specialist (Land, Water, Sand, Snow, Leaves, Houses & Vehicles) Will Find Your Lost Keepsake! Call ASAP (301) 466-8644!
I received a call from a young lady named Ashley who lost her 14 karat white and yellow gold diamond family heirloom ring. It had been missing outside for over a week. She and her girlfriend were hanging out on the Ashley’s side lawn of her Washington DC row house when her beloved keepsake that had been passed down the family line from her grandfather, grandmother, mother and then to Ashley went missing somewhere on the property. Ashley shared with me that she was playing with the ring in her hand when it slipped from between her fingers and landed somewhere on the ground. The two friends searched for hours on their hands and knees with much confidence that they would eventually find the precious jewel. However, as it turned out, all of their efforts led to no avail.
Sometime later that evening, as Ashley was searching online for answers to her problem, she came across the elite international directory of metal detecting specialists called THE RING FINDERS. She did not realize that such people existed and immediately contacted me to inquire about my services. I told Ashley that I am constantly doing search and recovery operations and that I was happy to help her in any way possible. She decided to go forward with my help the following day and I could not wait to try to solve this particular mystery.
The next morning, I headed out for Washington DC to an area called Mount Pleasant. Once I arrived, Ashley guided me over to a very narrow area of grass where she had been sitting on a café-type table with her friend over a week earlier. The section of real estate was so small that I couldn’t believe that Ashley had not already found her precious heirloom.
Next, my client reenacted the whole event and I personally couldn’t figure out why Ashley and her friend were unable to locate the piece of gold and diamonds. It seemed so simple. My best guess at the time was that the family heirloom must have flung in an unlikely direction, far enough away from the table so that the two ladies just didn’t look outside the box far enough. Yet, the young lady said that she didn’t remember doing anything with her hand that would cause the ring to be hurled off her finger. I did ask if the ladies had been drinking out at that table and Ashley did share openly that she had a couple of beers. Sometimes in dealing with ring searches like this one, two beers could make a difference depending on how the alcohol affected that particular individual. In some situations, the client remembers a certain amount of alcohol consumed when the actual amount was really a whole lot more. You never can tell and so when you can’t easily find the item, your mind starts to wonder how much of the story was left out due to being under the influence.
From the description that Ashley had given to me over the phone, I was perplexed by the whole mystery because this particular ring was fairly large in size. It would not have disappeared that easily. Ashley described the ring as being a men’s style band that was wide and heavy. It was mainly white gold with yellow gold accents along the rims and within its inner band. There were stars all around it with little diamonds in the middle of the stars. It really sounded quite lovely! This ring meant the world to Ashley and it broke her heart that something as simple as playing with it on her finger could end up causing the ring to disappear into seemingly thin air!
After I got the rundown about where Ashley sat and what had taken place, I began my search using my metal detector throughout the area where Ashley and her friend were sitting. There was mainly dirt with no grass in that search zone where the table was located. Therefore, it was pretty obvious where the eye would not have missed it. I checked a garden bed behind where she was sitting as well as locations along the side of the house. Nothing of importance was found and as time marched on I was getting more curious as to what could have happened with this ring. One of the last places I detected was closer to the wrought iron fence that overlooked the side of the property towards the Washington DC street. I moved a metal frame out of the way (which was the base for a hammock) and again I swung my coil over the ground and yet still nothing turned up.
I tried everything to recover this ring and still there were no substantial targets found except a bottle cap or two, a pull tab from a can and some other miscellaneous items discovered during the search. I even got down on my hands and knees and used my handheld detector in several places in order to work around metal infested sections of the property where I could not use my regular machine. Once again, I came away with no ring.
When nothing turned up, I stopped my search for a moment and rethought the whole event. I recounted in my head what Ashley’s recollection was of what happened a week earlier. When I couldn’t find the heirloom anywhere, I realized that perhaps I was thinking too far outside of the box of possibilities. I also adjusted my detector which may not have been set properly for this type of ring search. Also, I thought that perhaps it was possible that I had missed the ring right from under my nose when I had been detecting at the beginning of the search near where the table was situated. I then resumed the investigation with a fresh perspective and a focused attack plan.
My new strategy was to metal detect over and around the same patches of dirt where I had initially began my search. I started scanning the area about three feet away from where the table originally sat. Almost immediately I hit a fairly good signal with the exception of a scratchy tone that made the target appear to be more iron based rather than a precious metal. I really didn’t think the object could have been the ring because I was looking for a surface find, not an item completely buried below the ground.
Though I was pretty certain that the target below was not what I was looking for, it truly got me curious as to what this object actually was and so I started to carefully dig the object up with my hand digger. Just as I brought the chunky piece of metal out of the ground, the mystery began to be unraveled little by little! I caught a glimpse of a smooth rounded shape, then I saw stars engraved into the side of the object. Next, I observed some sparkles coming from what appeared to be a men’s ring! Finally, as I cleared off the rest of the dirt from the silver-like halo, there before me was the very culprit that I had been searching for for the past hour or so! It had been completely buried in the ground! I concluded that because it was completely dark outside at the time of the ring’s disappearance, Ashley must have gotten up out of her chair and had accidentally stepped on the ring. This caused it to completely disappear beneath the soft dirt where the eye would not have had a chance to spot even a glimpse of the piece of metal! Ashley’s simple account of her fidgeting with the ring without any force to cause the ring to go very far from the table, perfectly matched up with where I actually found the heirloom!
It all made perfect sense once I extracted the handsome band from below the dirt! I then realized where my obstacles existed in dealing with finding this piece of jewelry. First, my detector was incorrectly set at the time. Secondly, the ring was buried on a particular angle which made it more difficult to accurately assess the iron-like scratchiness sound that I was hearing in my headphones coming from the target. Thirdly, I wasn’t anticipating the possibility that the ring could have been fully pushed down into the ground where no metal was exposed at all! I learned a valuable lesson (even as a seasoned metal detectorist). Though I have had several searches where the item was recently lost and then found below the earth due to a shoe or foot that had pushed the jewelry down into the ground, I have at least been able to still see a slight “halo” of the ring peeking through. This particular search was definitely a first for me!
I was so happy for Ashley and I couldn’t wait to do the reveal! When I surprised her I could see her countenance light up with an expression of happiness and also great relief! Her beloved family heirloom had returned to her finger once more and she was so grateful that I could help solve this simple but yet seemingly more complicated mystery!
I truly love what I do for people like Ashley and returning rings and other cherished items is such a fulfilling and thrilling experience for me every time!
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