Dan Roekle

Lost Earring Found – Madison, WI

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


I have been metal detecting for a number of years.  Early on, my mother lost her earring in the backyard of my childhood home.  She immediately called me and asked if I could help find it.  It was a yellow gold hoop earring.  She had been in the garden, pruning her shrubs and pulling weeds in her flower beds.   I searched and searched, even returning multiple times – but never found that earring.  She sent the other earring she still had to my sister to try to find another pair as a replacement for a Christmas gift.   Fast forward 3-4 years … and while at my son’s soccer game, she lost one of the new earrings.  Could I redeem myself this second time and find the lost earring and return it to my mother?  After about 5 mins of searching, we found it.  My mom was very happy and rewarded us with a nice batch of chocolate covered peanut butter balls – a family favorite.

Check out the full story here:



Lost Ring Found – Middleton WI

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


Got a call this weekend from a guy whose wife lost both of her rings while doing yard work.  He found one of the rings, but couldn’t find the other.  The area was a flower bed that they had recently cleared of brush, and then spread a bale of straw.  It was a real life needle in a haystack!  We quickly started looking when we got there, first scanning the hay with our handheld metal detector.  Nothing.  Then I detected the grassy area around the flower bed.  Got a couple of hits that were deeper, got a hit on a piece of metal … then the sweet sound of gold.  Check out the full story below on my website, www.LostandFoundRing.com.


YouTube – You Guys Rock!



Lost Ring Found – Castle Rock Lake with Video

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)

We recently were called up for a hunt to Castle Rock Lake, WI. Ring was lost at Alcatraz Island. We spent around 1.5 hours just trying to find the location they lost it in. The woman knew she had lost it there, but when we returned the landscape of the lake was totally different. The weekend before there were hundreds and hundreds of boats … the day we went up there were 5.

For the other lake hunters reading this, they can appreciate the difference that makes when trying to find a location in a lake. There are few landmarks to “grid” against. We had one photo taken from the day she lost it – which ended up being our treasure map. We spent 1.5 hours matching up that photo with the landscape, tree by tree. Then once we felt we were in the right location, I set up my 4 PVC pipes, which I use as grid markers in lake searches. 15 mins later – bingo. That feeling of pulling something so valuable out of a wide open lake is incredible.

We’ve started to GoPro our hunts, so below is a video from that day. I love capturing that moment we either show / tell someone we found their ring – truly priceless as you will hear in this video. I’ve also included a link to the full story of how the ring was lost and found from the woman’s point of view.





ringCastleRockLakeEmily_crop    20150725_121002_crop

Newspaper Article – Lost Ring – Sun Prairie Star

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


We were recently featured in the Sun Prairie Star. The original story can be found at: http://theringfinders.com/blog/Dan.Roekle/2015/04/lost-ring-give-hope-ring-found-3-years/


Lost Class Ring from 1958 – Wait till you watch the video!

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


Arnie lost his 1958 class ring, and read an article about us in the local paper and wondered if we could help him find his lost ring from 4 years ago.  Check out the write up below, which includes video of the actual ring hunt … did we find his ring?  You’ll have to read it to find out … wait, of course did, why else would I be posting this … check out the size of that ring!

Link to Complete Story:


Direct link to video:




Lost Ring – Never Give Up Hope, Ring Found 3 Years Later

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


Recently, we were featured in an article by Doug Moe, a local reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal. The story was about our Ring Finding activities (http://host.madison.com/news/local/columnists/doug-moe/doug-moe-the-man-who-finds-lost-rings/article_3ef64cca-adf5-5735-8399-4f6e440631e0.html). After the article ran, I was contacted by about a dozen people who had lost their wedding ring between 1 and 8 years ago. This was awesome, because a lot of time people just give up looking for their ring. If you have a good idea on where and how you lost your ring, there is probably a pretty good chance it is still there. One of the couples who contacted me was Heather and Ron and this is their ring story.

Three years ago, Heather was preparing for an Easter Egg hunt in her backyard. The weather was just starting to warm up, so she decided it would be nice to have the hunt outside. She first wanted to clean up the dead leaves that were around her shrubs and in her planting beds from the past fall. Heather’s lot backed up to a wooded area, which was a convenient place to throw leaves and other yard waste. It was here that Heather tossed the leaves from her yard.

The next day, she was busy preparing for Easter dinner, when suddenly she realized that her wedding ring of 19 years was missing. She had been so busy getting ready for company that she didn’t focus on the fact that her ring was not on her finger. She felt absolutely sick, but hoped that it would show up. Days passed, but still not ring. She wondered if she had lost it in the house or maybe it fell down the drain? Ron, Heather’s husband, inspected all the traps under the sinks in the house. No ring. Time went on, but still no ring.

Heather thought back to the day she lost it and remembered that the day prior, she was in the backyard raking and cleaning the leaves. She also remembered that she was not wearing any gloves while working in the backyard, and there was a chance the ring could have fallen off while scooping up or tossing the leaves in the woods. They searched the areas she was working, but did not find anything. It’s amazing how a ring can quickly disappear from sight. After about a year of searching and wondering, Heather gave up – accepting the fact that she’d never see her ring again. They went to the jewelry store and picked out a new ring to replace the one missing from her finger.

Fast forward 3 years, and Ron was reading the Sunday paper one winter day. He showed Heather an article about some local “Ring Finders” who had helped others find their lost rings in the area. Ron called me the next day and told me their story. I said we could help, but needed to wait till Spring when the snow had melted and the ground thawed. This past weekend, I happened to be visiting an old family friend on the same side of Madison that Heather and Ron lived. I called Ron and setup a time to come out and take a look.

When we pulled up, we were greeted by Ellie, the family dog. Kylie, my daughter, enjoyed playing with Ellie … and I think Ellie enjoyed playing with Kylie too. Carter, my son, and I immediately started the search. We first scanned the planting area where Heather was working in 3 years ago. Amazingly, we found nothing. Typically around the perimeter of the house, we find a fair amount of junk left over from building projects or a recent roofing job – but there was nothing (which is awesome). So, we moved to the area where Heather had tossed the leaves. Almost immediately, we got a good strong and consistent signal. Carter scratched away the soil and we could quickly see the edge of a ring start to appear. The ring had been lost for 3 years, and after only about 5 mins we had found it!

I called Heather back out and distracted her with a “question”, when she turned around, she saw me holding up her ring.  She was shocked.  I don’t think she would ever had guessed that we would find her ring that quickly. After a couple of seconds, she let out a loud scream and jumped up and down with joy. This is my favorite part of Ring Hunting … the reveal. I love the reaction and expressions on people’s faces when we pull something out of the ground, that just seconds earlier, had been lost forever.

Thank you Ron and Heather for the generous reward. We will donate a portion of the reward to Carter and Kylie’s school, as we do with all rewards. We will then use the remainder to purchase some additional “test rings”. We have a couple of rings that we’ve found and have not been able to return. These prove very valuable when first starting a hunt. If we can get a similar ring and drop it in the same environment, it helps us tune our machines and focus on what signals to look for.

Remember, even if it’s been years – there is still hope that your ring can be found.

Every ring has a story, what’s yours?





25 Year Work Anniversary Ring Lost and Found – Another Reason Not to Rent a Metal Detector in Madison

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


I received an email from Al on Easter Sunday. I was up at my sister’s house in La Crosse, so I wasn’t able to call Al back right away. I did exchange some emails back and forth to ensure that this wasn’t a recent loss, as timing is so important when attempting to find a lost ring. The quicker you can get our on site, the higher likelihood you have of finding your lost ring.

The next day Al and I finally connected via phone. Al explained that the ring was a men’s gold ring, with a black onyx center stone with diamonds along the side. He had received the ring as recognition for 25 years of service from a local insurance company. Al explained that he was out mowing his lawn on his riding mower. Behind Al’s lot is a common greenway, which he frequently mows and maintains – almost like part of his own yard. He approached a set of trees which hadn’t been trimmed recently – so the branches hung down low. In order to mow around the tree, Al had to raise up the branches with his hand as he passed under the tree on his mower. While doing this, one of the small braches hooked around his ring and when he let go of the branch, the ring was ripped from his finger and flung off into the grass. He stopped his mower, got off and got a leaf rake. He raked the entire area, hoping to stir up the ring. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to find anything.

A year passed, and Al always wondered if his ring was still out there. One day, he was reading the Sunday paper and came across a story by Doug Moe, a local reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal. The story was about our Ring Finding activities (http://host.madison.com/news/local/columnists/doug-moe/doug-moe-the-man-who-finds-lost-rings/article_3ef64cca-adf5-5735-8399-4f6e440631e0.html). Al read the story and wondered if I would be able to find his ring he lost the previous year. Al had always thought about renting a metal detector, but was worried he wouldn’t know how to work it. Al did the right thing by calling us. I can’t tell you how many stories I’ve heard of people renting a metal detector – only to become completely frustrated after only a couple of mins.

I told Al I would need to check with my wife to see what our plans were, and we tentatively planned to get together over the weekend. After hearing Al’s story, I knew that I would be able to find his ring. If you know the exact area and moment you lost your ring – someone with a metal detector will find it, almost 100% of the time (unless someone else finds it first J).

After hanging up the phone with Al, I talked with my wife and the weekend was free. Only problem was it looked like rain for the next 7 days. If you read my other stories, you’ll know that I metal detector with my two kids. I told them the story about Al’s ring, and they started to get excited. You see, we had been on 3 previous hunts where we did not find the ring we were looking for. We are scheduled to go back on all three, as they were all lost between 1 and 8 years ago, and we haven’t given up yet. Al’s ring sounded to me like a slam dunk. Unfortunately, it was Monday night and the UW Badgers were playing for the National Championship against Duke – first time since 1941. We have season tickets and love Badger Basketball. Tipoff was a little after 8:00 … it was 5:45. I looked at the kids and said, “Maybe we just go out and take a look at the site and see what we find?” They were totally on board, and we were all excited to break our dry streak. We jumped in the van.

Al only lived about 15 mins away, however, as we pulled into his driveway it started to rain. Argh. We decided to give it a shot anyways, and headed to the backyard. Al explained how he lost again, and we started to search the area. We got some hits right away, but all turned out to be junk. You’d be surprised how much junk is buried in your backyard. I always tell people not to get discouraged when we don’t find their ring right away, and we assured Al that we’d keep looking until we found it. I widened the search area around the tree, not knowing how far that branch might have flung the ring. After about 20 mins, my daughter says to me, “That tree over there looks a lot like this tree.”  I’m not sure if Al heard her or not, but a min later he said, “Maybe it was closer to that tree.” Sure enough, after moving over … the very first hit we got was Al’s ring – about an inch below the grass.

Al was relieved to have the ring back on his finger, his wife also was surprised we were able to find it … and even in the rain! We quickly returned home to watch Bucky play a heck of a game, but came up short in the end.

Thanks for the reward Al and so glad we were able to get that ring back on your finger.


Newspaper Article – The Man Who Finds Lost Rings

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)

Very nice article run in the Wisconsin State Journal about a recent find, as well as some other past finds.



Amazing Lost Ring Story – Found Moments Before Big Snow Storm

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


My husband was helping me carry groceries from the car one evening when I noticed he seemed upset about something. I asked him what was wrong. He said that while I was shopping he was working on the computer and noticed that his wedding ring was missing from his hand.

I told him not to worry about it, after all hadn’t he recently scoffed when I had my own ring repaired that he couldn’t understand why we still bothered to wear wedding rings since we’d been married 25 years, everyone knew we were married, and it wasn’t like we would ever split up. A marriage is not a ring, I reminded him. A ring is just stuff. But John was clearly deeply upset. So I headed outside with a flashlight to search in the snow in the spot where he thought he’d been standing when the ring fell off his hand.

John is blind, and for many who are blind losing things is a regular part of life. One does not notice the gloves left behind in a friend’s car or the red-and-white cane left on the seat of a city bus. One is unable to see the phone that slips out of a pocket to fall silently into the snow or the keys that drop without a sound. Losing things is one of the recurring indignities of losing your vision and so it is for John. Misplacing things leaves him tense and frustrated, as if blindness has just scored another point leaving him scrambling once again to keep possession of the things in life that are most valuable to him, the intangible most of all.

John thought he may have lost the ring while playing with his guide dog in the snow but when I searched the spot with their footprints I didn’t see anything glinting in the flashlight beam. He was afraid the ring may have slipped off his finger while they were at work on campus, maybe while taking a mid-day break to play a game of tug-of-war outside the physics building. In fact he wasn’t sure when he lost the ring as he can’t see his hand. It may have been gone for weeks he feared.

That night he was sleepless over the loss of the ring. Even though I kept assuring him it was no big deal, it could be replaced, he was not consoled. Blindness was winning again.  First thing in the morning I started calling around to rent a metal detector, but soon realized this was not a feasible plan.  We’d be dragging the detector all over the city as there were several spots where John thought the ring might have fallen into the snow. And there was no guarantee we’d even figure out how to use it properly.

I kept putting on my coat and boots, going outside, searching the spot on the hill where John said he’d been standing when he thought the ring might have slipped off his hand. I’d get down on my hands and knees, search every inch of the frozen grass and snow, searching again and again. I had to find that ring! I had to see my husband happy again.

While searching for a local store that rented metal detectors, one of the hits that came up on Google was www.TheRingFinders.com. I exchanged a few messages with Dan Roekle and it was clear he was our best bet for finding the ring.

Dan and his kids came over to our house after work with their metal detector and other equipment in tow. We didn’t think there was much chance of finding the ring that evening as it was already dark, not to mention bitterly cold. But Dan wanted to get started and at least get a look at the first search site. Anyhow a Midwestern blizzard was bearing down, predicted to dump a half-foot of snow on the city, obliterating any tracks of where John and his dog had been.

I turned on the house lights, opened the garage door to flood the driveway with light and passed out flashlights. A group of us huddled in the cold to watch as Dan dropped a wedding ring made of the same metal as John’s onto the frozen trampled ground. The detector chirped, its screen lit up with a digital reading, and Dan began slowly making his way up and down the hillside, maneuvering the detector over snow and ice, listening for a tone similar to the one triggered by the test ring.  The detector softly chirped every few moments as Dan passed a tree and he theorized that landscape stakes or discarded nails from a roofing job were to blame. “There’s a lot of metal in this hill,” he said.

It was clear John and I would have never been able to locate his ring with a rented metal detector. He’d been guiding the detector over the ground for only about five minutes when it chirped loudly and Dan announced a reading in the range of the test ring. “We’ve found it,” he said with certainty and you could almost hear the gasping of all the frozen breaths. His son Carter knelt in the spot where his dad and the detector pointed, and with a water-proof pin pointer worked to zero-in on the precise location of the ring in the snow. Carter scraped and dug through the snow and ice and within moments held it up as a whoop arose.

I may have been the most astonished as the ring had been pressed into the frozen earth in the exact location where I had searched on my hands and knees many times that day without spotting it. It was the spot where John had been standing when he pulled off his gloves after playing with his dog and leaned over to pick up the harness.

Thank you, Dan, Carter and Kylie!

Judy and John



Lost Ring in Garden, Don’t Waste your Time Renting a Metal Dectector – Call a Ring Finder! – Madison, WI

  • from Madison (Wisconsin, United States)


I took a day off from work to take care of several errands around town that had piled up, so I was driving a lot, stopping in several businesses, and crossing many parking lots.  Later in the day, I worked in my yard, weeding and cutting back branches with my pruners.  I usually wear gloves when I’m gardening, but I didn’t think I’d be out for very long that afternoon, so I skipped the gloves.  (Never again!)

Among other things, I inherited crooked little fingers and big knuckles from my father.  I’m also left-handed, and my sister had given me some left-handed pruners.  The big knuckles mean that my wedding ring has had several modifications to make it fit my finger right, with the last being hinges on the sides and a clasp on the palm side of the ring.

After I had done more gardening than I planned, I had another errand to run, and when I looked at my left hand on the steering wheel, my stomach dropped about a foot when I realized my wedding ring was gone and I had no idea when – or where – I had lost it.  Because I’m usually pretty aware of it, I thought I must have lost it in the garden – but where?  I was all over the yard and it could be anywhere – in the mulch, in the dirt, in the grass, in the overcrowded hostas, in the birdfeed bin – anywhere.

When I got home, my husband and I started to search, but it was getting dark, so we decided to try again later.  On my next day off, I checked with the places that I had visited on the Thursday that I lost the ring, but no one had seen it.  I still suspected it was in the yard, but I still didn’t know specifically where.

My husband kept up the search over the next several days, and I borrowed a metal detector from someone who answered my plea on our neighborhood message board.  But I quickly realized that I did not have the skill (or the time to learn the skill) to use it effectively.  Dan later told me that this is common when people rent a metal detector.  Feeling more and more discouraged, I checked the Lost and Found listing on Craigslist, where a title jumped out at me: “Lost Ring?”

That listing led me to the www.TheRingFinders.com website and to Dan Roekle, who I contacted. After coordinating our busy schedules, he and his son Carter came over on a Saturday afternoon.  I showed them the two specific places in the yard that I thought were the most likely places where my ring was likely to be.  Dan commented on the large number of pieces of metal that he was getting hits on, mostly from the roof replacement that we had a few years back.  He showed me one of the pieces and then he continued his search.  A few minutes later, he came back to where I was and with a totally straight face, said “Sometimes we find other things, too” and opened his hand.  There was my ring!  He had found it in the middle of the leaves of a hosta plant – the perfect place to hide.  The grin on my face still hasn’t gone away!

And there’s one more thing my father gave me – he was a clergyman who married my husband and me, so part of the service was blessing our rings.  He died seven years ago, and knowing that I have back the ring that he blessed, means more to me than I had ever thought it would.  Thank you so much, Dan and Carter!