We took a trip to Clearwater in September, and one of the highlights was getting to take our 18-month-old son to the ocean for the first time. His experience was great, but after an hour of wading in the surf and walking up and down the beach I noticed that my wedding ring was gone. We did some halfhearted searching, but really didn’t expect much luck finding one small item in the ocean. That night we posted on Craigslist. That also seemed like a long shot, but we figured that the ring has a specific inscription, and if someone else found it and wanted to contact us Craigslist might give them a way. In the morning we had two responses — one from Stan at Ring Finders saying he’d be happy to meet us and search together, and a second from someone else saying “you should take down your ad and contact Ring Finders”.
Timing was tough for us. This was the last day of the vacation, and we had to navigate the toddler’s sleep schedule and make it to church before we left town. Still, Stan said he had a 95% success rate if we came and helped narrow the search area, and while that sounded impossibly high it gave us enough hope to give it a try. So we met Stan back at the beach, explained where we had been the day before, and let him start searching. He suggested that we stick around for an hour in case any other memories came to us, and after that he’d spend another hour before bringing others down to help search. We discussed the location a little more, and decided, based on landmarks like “this hole here, and that sign over there”, that he was in about the right spot. We were just explaining that to Stan when he said, “hold on, I’ve got something right here.” He scooped up some sand, drained it, and handed my ring back to me with a smile. We couldn’t believe it. The total search was maybe 15 minutes, which turned out to be especially important that day. We’re adopting a second child, and that same afternoon we got word that the mother had gone into labor early so we took the next flight out. Without Stan’s quick response, his availability to meet us right away, and the short search time, our window would have closed and we would have left town without ever finding the ring. He was exactly the right person at the right time. Thanks Stan!
It all started with a friendly tournament of volleyball with my company to raise money for the American Diabetes Association. What was a very fun event unfortunately ended with park full of people searching for my wedding band. On the last game of the day my ring flew off after an attempt to set the ball. We had been playing in the rain so a wet hand made it that much easier to launch my ring into oblivion. After about 30 minutes of approximately 30 people combing the court for my ring with no results, I needless to say a little bummed. One of my co-workers presented a possible solution. He had previously lost his ring as well and his wife handed him a metal detector to search for it. I borrowed his metal detector and searched the court for another couple of hours in the rain. Sadly enough I yielded no results. Five days later I searched for possible metal detector services and came across the SRARC website. I sent out my email for help at 1am in the morning. To my surprise, I received a phone call hours later at 7:30am from Stan. We arranged to meet at the park where I lost my ring. Stan had texted me when he approximately five minutes away. I had run across the street to grab some orange juice and a banana for breakfast. By the time I got back Stan had already been on the volleyball court. He proceeded to ask me about where I may have lost my ring and for me to describe what it looks like. As I was describing my ring, Stan held up my ring in his hand. “Does it look like this?” I cannot say thank you enough to Stan for making my day. Despite my wife trying to make me feel better by being so wonderful and understanding, deep down inside I was sad that my ring was gone. The service that Stan and the SRARC provided is priceless and deserving of much recognition. Thank you Stan and SRARC.
On Labor Day weekend, Eduardo and his family had just one hour left before checkout time at their hotel on the Gulf of Mexico. They decided to take a last quick swim before packing up and leaving for the trip home. He was standing about waist deep and decided to kneel down to cover his upper body with cool water. As he went down, his hands pushed into the sand and when he stood up, he had lost his 19 year old wedding ring. The family looked for as long as they could before having to leave and check out but could not fine the ring.
Eduardo was devastated and brooded for about a week before remembering a story he heard about someone’s ring being found and returned after three years by a metal detectorist. He began looking for someone who might do the same for him. On September 15 he found the SRARC on Ring Finders and sent an email requesting our help. Mike Miller put together a team, Jay and Karen Ganz, and they met Edwardo and his family at the site on September 21. After 2 1/2 hours of hunting and dark approaching we gave up and gave the bad news to the family. We had not found the ring. We let them know that we would return and hunt for the ring another time but that of course did not lift their spirits much.
On the following Monday Mike returned and began hunting slightly North of the previous hunt and within an hour found the ring. He contacted Eduardo and had him come to the club meeting that evening. We returned his ring at the meeting and as you can see he was surprised and delighted.
Dustin and friends were down from Georgia to attend a wedding. After the ceremony they all had a great time relaxing at the beach. In the evening they got a couple of Volleyball games going and when Dustin went to clean up for dinner he noticed in the shower that his wedding ring was missing. The whole group searched for hours in the sand around the volleyball court but with no luck. The next morning, Dustin was searching the internet for places to rent metal detectors when he stumbled on The Ring Finders site and found SRARC. He contacted Mike Miller and Mike organized a quick hunt as they were preparing to leave for the trip back to Georgia. Chris Duerden was able to join Mike and the each took one side of the volleyball court. In about 5 minutes Chris yelled “Here it is”. Dusting was as happy as could be, Way to Go Chris!!!!!
Who would have thought that a wedding band lost in the Gulf of Mexico would ever have been found again. This is a story with a wonderful ending thanks to the wonderful guys at SRARC.com. My husband an I were just married in April of 2014. My husband is very close to his family and especially a grandfather who has since passed away. He had his grandfather’s wedding band that had WM to BW 1946. They got married right after he got back from WWII. They were married for 46 wonderful years. We took the gold wedding ring and “soddered” it in the middle of two white gold bands from me. So there was an heirloom from his grandfather and a piece of me, we then added our own inscription to the existing inscription. CB to WS 4/2014. We had our own special love story. We dated for two years in NY and then I moved to Florida for work – Long story short, Bill stayed in NY, he was a teacher and wrestling coach and had a great teaching job in NY. We spent every holiday and vacation back and forth between Florida and New York. Bill showed up one day unbeknownst to me when I was visiting my father in Orlando to say he was here to stay, he was teaching in Tampa. We were married ocean-side in a beautiful ceremony just a few months later. I was so happy to put that ring on his finger.
So, on labor day, we spent a beautiful Monday at my favorite place, St. Pete Beach. We were in the water and all of a sudden I heard Bill say words that put my heart in my throat. “My ring just fell off in the water”. I knew too many people who have lost their rings in the water forever. We looked for hours and could not find it. Leaving the beach that night was heartbreaking. It felt like that was it, we will never see it again. We went home and got on the computer and after only one search I found the SRARC group. Stan contacted me really quickly and we made arrangements to meet in the eve. So I could show him where we were. After they asked me a whole bunch of questions which would help them ascertain where we were, they started looking even before I got there. Chris was already looking when he ran into Stan. I got a phone call later that day from Chris – he found the ring. If I could have kissed Chris on the spot I would have! I was elated!
When I went to pick the ring up, I met Chris and his wife. Two very lovely, sweet people. I did actually hug Chris. I was so happy, I was actually shaking. My husband had just started a new job and couldn’t be there to pick it up, but believe me he was more than ecstatic.
Who would have thought a ring in an ocean would ever be found and found the very next day. I am forever indebted. Not only did they find my ring, but the club does it for free. I did donate to the club itself, but nobody would take money individually. What angels you guys are!
I said a Novena to St. Anthony that day that it was lost – and he sent me you guys! Thank you
Marcus was enjoying Labor Day weekend with friends and family at Ft Desoto Park and he and a friend decided to toss the football around in the water. After a couple of throws Marcus noticed that his wedding ring was missing. He had stayed pretty much in the same place so he had one of his friends bring him some swim goggles and he started to look on the bottom for his ring. Keeping his wits about him, he had his friend stand in place so they would keep a good reference point. After a few minutes Marcus had a brilliant idea. He borrowed his friend’s wedding ring and proceeded to dive under water and set the ring on the bottom so he could see what it would look like when he searched for his own ring. You guessed it!!!!!!! The second ring instantly disappeared and he could not find it either. So now we have two wedding rings, one gold, the other platinum lost in very close proximity. After a short while they decided that they had better establish some good landmarks and then find someone with a metal detector. Marcus contacted Ringfinders and we met him at the location the next morning. Four ringfinders, Tom Jones, Paul Hill, Mark Prue, and Mike Miller started the hunt at 9:00 am and by 9:15 am the rings had been recovered. Great work Team!!!!!!!!!. The smile on Marcus’s face says it all.
81 year old James Mahaffery and his wife were down from Gainsville visiting their son and they decided to spend some time at the beach. Last Wenesday they headed out to Honeymoon Island and were enjoying the water. James was on his hands and knees playing in the surf when his hand slipped off a rock and his custom ring disappeared into the sand. They looked for quite a while but could not find it. The ring was a custom made heavy silver ring with 2 horizontal bands of gold and had been on his hand for many years. They gave up and a few days later contacted Howard Metts to see if he could help. Howard is member of the SRARC ringfinders team so he made arrangements for the team to do a hunt on today. Six hunters showed up and within 30 minutes the ring was recovered. James son met us at the beach and when Chris returned the ring he called his Mom and she was so surprised and pleased it was a joy to hear her reaction over the phone. A big thanks to Chris Duerden, Howard Metts, Paul Hill, Mark Prue, Stan Flack, and Mike Miller for helping with this recovery.
Ammi found us on Ringfinders and contacted Tom with a request to recover a special ring that had been lost under her dock on Lake Tarpon. We happened to be in the area when Tom called to see what we could do, so we headed over to Ammi’s house. We found out that Ammi’s daughter Jen, and a friend Marie, had laid a towel on the dock and Marie decided to put her ring on the towel so it could not be lost. The ring was handed down to her by her father. It had been his mother’s wedding ring and carried a very large sentimental value within the family. Later in the day Marie picked up the towel, forgetting there was a ring on it and sure enough the ring fell between deck boards.
The space under the dock was very tight so Paul went under alone and worked for about 45 minutes before finding the ring right next to one of the support posts. The girls were just overjoyed when they saw Paul holding the ring. Some more big smiles!!!! Way to go Paul.
Brian was having a great Sunday Soccer game until he was headed home and noticed he no longer had his wedding ring. He returned to look for it and even considered renting a metal detector but then he discovered there was a club that offered to recover lost items. He sent an email and Mike Miller responded and then set up a hunt of the entire soccer field for the following Saturday morning. Paul Hill, Howard Metts, Elmer Stennes, and Mike showed up for the hunt. We hunted the entire field and after 3 hours Paul found the missing ring. Brian could not believe the dedication we had in searching for the ring and was very pleased with the result. As you can see by his smile he is very happy to have his wedding ring back on his finger. Way to go guy’s !!!!!!!!
The weekend before my vow renewal, a few of my friends and I decided to go out. We ended up at Jimmy B’s on St Pete Beach and after a few drinks and several hours of dancing; we decided a quick dip in the gulf would be wonderful. We were only in for a few minutes but when we came out and posed for a photo, I noticed that my wedding rings were gone. I cannot describe how surreal that moment was or how quickly the panic set in. We searched for an hour before they finally convinced me to turn in for the night. I lay in my hotel bed, unable to sleep, feeling absolutely naked without the ring that my husband had given me when he proposed. That ring stood for so much. He worked so hard, handpicked every stone, designed the setting, not like at Jared where you pick a pre-fabricated design, he drew it on paper and had someone make it. That ring symbolized eight years of love and friendship, five years of marriage , two children, hard times and amazing happiness. I couldn’t just lay there while it drifted in the ocean, so at 3:30 in the morning, I headed back out and spent the next several hours combing the beach with a flashlight (two days later my neck still hurts from looking down). I finally called my husband to share the terrible news at 6:45. Not only was he sweet to me and sad for me, he immediately took action. He sent out a text to everyone he knew asking for a metal detector. By 8:30 he had gotten into contact with someone who was going to meet us at the beach. I was fairly exhausted from both the festivities and several hours of searching the night before but perked at the possibility of a happy ending. I met Stan and my husband around 9:30 and Stan immediately set to work. He was methodical and friendly. He gave me hope. I wasn’t able to pinpoint exactly where I was, I mean the beach is the beach right? Especially at 2 am. Still, Stan was optimistic. By 10:30 though, we were all feeling a little discouraged. I had to go check out of the hotel and as I was heading away from the water, I noticed my friend’s leftover drink from the night before. I flagged Stan down to show him that this was where we went in. I left the beach feeling terrible, so sure that ever finding my ring again was a lost cause. What would I wear at our vow renewal? I didn’t have a ring for my husband to place on my finger. How would we ever replace the ring that my husband had put so much effort and love into making? I could barely keep from crying. Twenty minutes later, while packing the last few things in my bag, I got a message from my husband. It was a photo of my rings! Stan had found them… both! I couldn’t believe my luck. I felt like a weight had been lifted (even though my neck still hurt). I raced back to the beach and cried happy tears when my husband placed my ring on my finger all over again. It was wonderful. I hugged Stan. I couldn’t be more thankful for his hard work and tireless effort to help a total stranger. His focus and compassion have given me a happy ending against truly unbelievable odds. Thank you Stan Flack!