High school student, Maya Zelaya, heard the sound of her class ring when it ricocheted off the aluminum siding of her house. Then—sickening silence.
Fresh snow was falling in Franklin, WI, on December 13, a Friday-the-13th Maya would not soon forget. As she removed her glove from the hand on which she wore her white-gold, ruby & sapphire studded ring, a quick shake of her cold fingers was all it took to send the precious ring flying. For Maya, it all seemed surreal, kind of like watching a slow-motion movie with the sound turned off. But her now ring-less finger was all too real. Her class ring, honoring her upcoming graduation year, 2014, was gone.
A frantic search in the snow began. But it was to no avail. The ring seemed to have vanished in the deepening whiteness.
Perhaps they could rent a metal detector. When a friend showed up with a detector late that night it only deepened Maya’s disappointment. A plethora of spurious signals made no sense at all. The ground seemed alive with a cacophony of indiscernible chirps and squawks. It was then, Maya’s Mom, Kyle, found The Ring Finders web site. Were they for real, she wondered.
Being it was a Saturday, I was able to respond right away to the pleading voice message on my iPhone. A few hours later a careful grid pattern narrowed the search to an area where two lengths of drain pipe lay half buried in the fresh Wisconsin snowfall. Amidst the befuddling chatter in my headphones, a distinctive signal was faintly discernable. It came from the vicinity of one of the drainpipes. Sure enough, wedged underneath the pipe lay Maya’s ring. It was buried in about two inches of white stuff. But its hiding place was no match for my Minelab Excalibur 2 detector and a tuition honed by 36 years of metal detecting around the world.
Maya, I so much enjoyed helping to get your ring back and seeing your beautiful smile. Your Mom and Grandma sure pulled out all the stops for you. May you all have a wonderful Christmas together in your new home! And may the story of your ring continue for many, many Christmases to come.