I received an email of a lost wedding ring located in Cemetary Lake, Coldwater Michigan this morning.
Stephanie shared her information and told me how the ring was lost, and gave me the address to their family home where the ring was lost on June 20th.
After the loss, a coordinated search between three sisters and their husbands began, leading them to locate my ringfinders profile online.
As always, I was happy to help and I fortunately had a babysitter today, making for a perfect day to dive!
Several hours of prescheduled obligations had me staring at my watch, and itching to load my dive gear. This would be my first ringfind of 2020!
I’ve been diving for 25 years, and metal detecting under water for the past 15. I’ve found hundreds of rings but every search gets me excited still! There is also something about the silence, serenity and stress of having a task to find such a sentimental piece of jewelry. Each search is special, yet difficult in their own way.
The special part is, a wedding ring you were married with can never be replaced with another store bought ring. The day and memories lead back to the moment that ring was placed on your finger. This is the exact reason I have dedicated so much, and spent hundreds of hours underwater.It is equally as special being able to give back a ring to those who think it was lost forever.
During the drive to Coldwater I began to daydream about all the rings I recovered. The past searches, different lakes, and different emotions witnessed after the ring was found. Some were explosive and emotional, others were no big deal to the person who lost it. I’ve always remained excited, and this is mainly the reason why I continue to help with recoveries.
On arrival, Denise and her husband transported me to the location of the lost ring. They recalled details from Saturday and relived the loss themselves. I assured them I would do everythinf I could to find the ring, even if the search continued theough the night. I entered the water with the weight of the situation on my shoulders, and began my search.
I searched in a parallel line to the shore, using the water depth and a dead tree as a reference point. I slowly finned along, overlapping swings to insure noting was missed. The area gridding led to many targets, which had to be dug and removed until the ring was found.
Numerous targets were dug over the next 90 minutes. I found and removed 12-14 brass hulls from the old paper hull shotgun shells (circa 1920-1930), boat prob pieces, a lincoln copper penny, a spinnerbait, several bottle caps and a few sinkers and split shots.
During the search, a storm moved through, bringing cloud cover and rain. This decreased the low visibility to nearly no visibility. I’m familiar and comfortable in these conditions, so the search continued without delay.
Around the 92 minute mark, after using 2000psi of air, I received a clear load signal. A few whisks of my hand allowed the settling silt to give me a glimpse of the source of the tone, a huge beautiful ring I recognized from Stephanie’s picture!
As always, I tried to stay calm, but the excitement grasps me and I failed again. Propelling myself to the surface with the ring in my outstretched arm, I excited the water with a fraction of the finesse and beauty of a killer whale at sea world.
Hearing the splash, Denise and her husband threw up their arms and began cheering and yelling after they focused on the ring in my hand!!
This single moment, a mere several seconds of time is held and saved in my memory for the rest of my life! The uncontrolled and unscripted emotions is exactly what makes these risks and effort worth it!
On the boat ride back, numerous calls were made to Steph Staten, family members and friends!
Stephanie, I am grateful you found me online and trusted me with such a sentimental task! I appreciate the genuine hospitality shown by your family, and I am confident this day will remain with you, as it has me!!