Adam gave me a call yesterday telling me that last winter while walking down the back alley by his work he slipped and fell and when brushing himself off he lost his wedding ring. He tried finding it but no luck. Rented a detector in the summer and still no luck. I’m pleased to say that after about 45 minutes I found his ring and returned it to him.
Story of lost ring leads to another reunion, 25 years after loss at Lake Sikome
Chris Spronk searched repeatedly for ring his mother gave him on her last Christmas
Pamela Fieber · CBC News · Posted: Oct 02, 2020 3:00 PM MT | Last Updated: 24 minutes ago
Calgarian Chris Spronk read last weekend about the return of a precious grad class ring lost 37 years ago in Calgary — found by a member of a metal detecting group called the Ring Finders — and it reminded him of a terrible loss in his own life.
He decided to reach out, and posted something in the comments section of the CBC Calgary Facebook page.
The ring he lost 25 years ago, while tossing a football at Sikome Lake, was very special to him.
“I lost my mom when I was young, when I was 20 years old. And the Christmas before she passed away, she had all of the gold that she had ever worn or owned in her life melted down and designed into these two rings — one for me and one for my brother,” Spronk told theCalgary Eyeopener.
“They were, you know, signet rings with our initials carved into them, with raw gold in the background — very distinctive rings. So it had a lot of meaning to me. And, you know, I wore it proudly.”
Two years later, Spronk lost the ring at the manmade lake in Fish Creek Provincial Park.
“Unfortunately, stuff happens,” he said. “I was throwing a ball, I looked down, and the ring was gone.”
For 25 years, Spronk says, he thought about the ring every time he drove past Lake Sikome in southeast Calgary. He and his brother Brian, who understood the personal value of the ring, returned to the lake many times to look for it, even using metal detectors and screens to sift through the sand. Eventually, he lost hope.
“I’d given up on this ring long ago, just because it was gold and if it was found, it was going to be melted down,” he said.
Then last week, Spronk read the story on CBC Calgary’s Facebook page. He’d had no idea a group like Ring Finders existed.
“I was genuinely happy for the person, to see something like that returned, and just kind of put an off-the-hip comment saying, ‘Oh, that’s really cool. You know, I lost a ring in Sikome 25 years ago. Maybe I need to wait another 12 years for mine to come back,’ or something like that,” Spronk said.
Someone on the page encouraged Spronk to check out the Calgary metal detector’s club Facebook page.
He made a request to join, and outlined his story on the club page.
“The admin at first kind of said, not a chance, never going to find it, the sand has been changed there, it’s been 25 years,” he said. “I know it was a long shot, a huge long shot. But she also tagged this fellow, Kevin. And 10 minutes later, I got a message from somebody I didn’t know, named Kevin.”
Spronk opened the message from Kevin Niefer.
“I may have your ring,” the message read.
Niefer, a local realtor who has been a metal detectorist for 30 years, joined the Calgary Eyeopener to describe his side of the events, which started with him finding the ring at Lake Sikome about 25 years ago on a routine outing.
Niefer said he has “a few hundred” rings in his collection — but this one stood out in his memory.
“It just rang a bell because it was so unique at the time. And the inscription inside said, ‘Chris, love mom.’ And I’m just going, ‘Wow, poor guy.’ I remember finding that and going man, that’s pretty brutal, to lose that.”
‘Most guys just melt them down’
Niefer said he has kept the ring in his collection for 25 years. He has never been one to melt down the gold he finds while out with his metal detecting gear.
“Most guys just melt them down or pawn them off, and I’ve kept them over 30 years,” he said. “It just didn’t feel right, I guess, to do that, to melt them down.”
And Spronk, now reunited with his ring, is grateful for that.
“You know, it means the world. It’s this gratitude that I can’t express, just the fact that I do have it back and just the emotions that I’m feeling because it was so unexpected, so unplanned,” he said.
“And just I’m thankful for people like Kevin because it shows there’s good in the world. There’s people with integrity, there’s people with conviction that stand by things like this — that want to see good.”
Got a call! Tom’s wife lost a diamond earring when it got caught in a badminton net she was moving. They looked for it without luck. That’s when they called me. Stud earrings are small and hard to find with a standard coil. I swept the second area with my usual coil but found it wouldn’t pick it up. So I swap
ped to my sniper coil and started the search. It didn’t take too long. Key to the success was the fact they knew where and when it was lost.
I was halfway through my daily bike ride when my phone rang from a number I didn’t recognize. I stopped pedaling and pulled over to answer my phone and heard a ladies voice asking me, “Do you still find rings for people?”. I answered yes all the time and she went onto to explain that her daughter had lost her engagement ring in High River, Alberta.We agreed that I would meet her daughter the next day to conduct a search. Her daughter Fontanna came on the phone and explained that she had only been engaged for 2 weeks and went out to do some spring cleanup gardening and that she had lost it either in the front or back yard.
I arrived the next day and she came out to greet me send showed me the areas thought it might be. I started grid searching the front yard then the boulevard next the back yard and nothing but junk iron signals. I asked if they had retained the garbage bags from the cleanup, as that’s a common hiding place for lost rings. She explained that they had emptied the bags onto the garage floor and searched through them, I asked if I could try with my detector. On the way in the garage I noticed a bag of garbage leaning against the outside wall and asked about it, Fontanna explained, that it was just kitchen scraps and dog waste, it wouldn’t be in there. So I set up my detector to low sensitivity and iron discrimination then tested for rebar placement and tone. Next, I searched the spread out leaf litter and dry grass. I easily located tin foil bottle caps etc. but no ring. Then I searched the backyard and front yard yet again knowing it had to be somewhere on the property.Still no luck,
Fontanna’s fiancé came out of the house and asked her if we checked the garbage bag out back she again said she had no reason to believe it was in it. Since I had nowhere else to search I asked if we could check it anyway.They agreed and we dumped out the garbage bag and just as Fontanna had said, it was just kitchen scraps and dog waste, a pretty nasty pile of stuff. I scanned it with me detector and we pulled out metal items foil, a pop can, just the stuff you would expect to be in the garbage bad. I noticed a pair of work gloves and scanned them. I got a strong signal and separated them to discover it was only the left-hand glove that had a signal. With my pin-pointer probe, I narrowed the signal to the little finger of the glove.Fontanna’s very patient fiancé took the glove and cut off the end of the finger to reveal the treasured Lost Engagement Ring.It was smiles all around, another happy customer of the ring Finders. Thanks for the generous reward Fontanna.
Sometimes no matter how hard you try you come up empty. I got a call from Ken after he had found my blog at www.theringfinders.com/bill.jones , you see Ken had lost the keys to his truck and after checking around in the snow decided it was futile to continue. Ken asked me if I could come out and search his property he figured the area was about two football fields in size. I agreed and a couple of days later I drove out to Ken’s place by Brant Alberta, a 1.5-hour drive from my location, arriving there at noon I got my Metal Detector setup and then scanned the ground as I followed Ken. He retraced his steps from the house to the barn then past some corrals. I had the privilege of meeting their Llama “Dolly” ( Dolly Llama ) we went past the corals to the dumpster, then to a feed area for the horse metal detecting the whole way. So far only deep signals and the odd surface trash. Then I got a good signal in the shed the horses go in to feed, alas, it turned out to be a piece of sharp metal. Good to get it out of there anyway. After 2 hours we had detected through numerous corrals, sheds, and barns. When Ken announced that the May have fallen out of his pocket onto the tractor and vibrated off in one of the fields over 100 acres waiting to be searched. We retired to his beautiful ranch style home ( which is for sale, in case you want a ranch ) had coffee and cookies and discussed the days’ search. Ken showed me the hole in the pocket he thought the keys had fallen out of but we determined that the hole was too small for the keys to fit through, I asked about other clothes he had worn the day of the loss, he said, they were in the laundry hamper. I suggested we check them, his lovely wife went through the pockets of his clothes. Sadly no keys were found but she did come up with a hand full of unchecked lottery tickets destined to be laundered. Hopefully, there is a big winner there, good luck Ken.
Not all hunts are successful but you never know when you might win the lottery.
Aaron had been surfing the internet trying to find a solution to his problem when he found The Ring Finders.Aaron had a heated discussion with his significant other when he threw his wedding ring into a park. he called me asking if I could help him find it before a passer-by found it first.We agreed to meet at his home and went over to the park. he gave me a rough idea where he was standing and in which direction it was thrown.
I set to work girding the area and slowly passing my coil over the ground listening for that telltale tone and numeric I.D. that is particular to yellow gold.After 30 minutes of searching I got the sound I was looking for and upon parting the grass there was the beautiful sight of a gleaming yellow gold ring.Aaron was thrilled to have it back and agreed never to throw it away again.
Sometimes things done in anger can get undone, just call The Ring Finders.
I received a call last evening from Orla, she explained that her husband had been cross-country skiing in a park area in Calgary, Alberta and had fallen and lost his Tungsten Wedding Ring.We agreed to meet the next day since it was already dark.We got together at 3:30 pm the next day and made our way over to the park area.The climb down to the track was a bit slippery considering it was a steep hill and I’m not as limber as I once was, but we made it without mishap.Once at the track through the trees, Orla pointed out the 2-meter x 3-meter area where her husband had fallen and I started to work.While there was quite a bit of snow the long grass had been bent over by the weight of the snow making a loose but thick base for a ring to fall into and through.However, after just a few passes over the area my Metal Detector came through with the bright tone I was hoping for and after scratching through the snow and grass out came a bright silver colored Tungsten Wedding Band.Orla was thrilled to get it back as they had already looked to no avail. Another super happy customer of the Ring Finders.
I received a phone call this morning from Norman, he had lost his Platinum Wedding Band and wanted me to go out and do a search for it. He admitted he really wasn’t sure where he lost it but would like to meet me at his home this evening. We agreed on a time, due to the short winter days it was dark out and cold -12c by the time I arrived there. However, I came prepared with a flashlight, Garrett AT PRO Metal Detector, Garret Pro Pointer and warm clothing. When I knocked on the door Norman answered immediately, he had obviously been waiting anxiously for me to arrive so that we could start the search. He explained again how the ring could be on his front drive or where he parked his car on the street or the Light Rail Transit Parking Lot or at work. Since we are already at his home that’s where we started. I gridded the front driveway and only got signals from the re-bar under the cement, but since I had set up the machine to sound clearly on Platinum or high carat gold I easily discarded those signals. After about 10 minutes the driveway was done with no sign of the ring and so I concentrated on the public sidewalk between where Norman’s car was parked on the road and the property, while Norman went through the interior of the car searching it with a flashlight in hopes it may be inside. Still no luck, I asked Norman to move his car so that I could access the area underneath and around, you see, cars are mostly metal so they sound off loudly and mask any other metals close by. Once the car had been moved I scanned the area in front of the vehicle the first pass nothing but junk but the second pass I got a good sharp signal in the range I was looking for, I scraped away the packed down snow with my Garrett Retriever, (across between a pick and a rake but no bigger than a hammer). I caught a glimpse of the ring and picked it up. I exclaimed to Norman, “this a good signal, it’s heavy but not likely your ring” (wink wink) once I passed him the snow-laden ring he excitedly announced it was his ring. We were both very happy. Norman, because he thought the ring was gone forever and me because I got to return another smile. Just look at that smile. Thanks Norman for the generous reward.
Roland had been dusting the snow off his coat last night when his ring flew from his finger and into his front yard. While he knew the general area he had searched and searched but to no avail, the heavy Platinum Wedding Band could not be seen.He even shoveled the snow off the lawn and into his garage so it could melt and he could recover the ring but still no ring.That’s when his wife found The Ring Finders online and Roland called me.Roland explained, that the ring was very important to them as they just got married last summer, he couldn’t believe he’d lost it already.
We arranged to meet at his home today and he showed me the area his ring could be in, we talked about how he had dusted his coat off and I had him reenact the scene for me.Based on his movements, the weight of the ring, and the force behind the movement, as usual I determined it could be just about anywhere in the yard even possibly in the neighbours yard.I searched the yard in two directions then checked the far side of a shrub bed on the opposite side of a tree to where the action had taken place.You guessed it I got the sweet sound of Platinum in my headphones and brushed away the snow to recover Roland’s Wedding Ring. When I handed him the ring he exclaimed, “Thank God !”and you too Bill.It was a big weight off his shoulders and back onto his finger.
Sometimes I go out with my detector to near by Parks , Ball Diamonds and Tot Lots.I clean out a lot of junk and sharp objects keeping the community tidy and people safe from getting cut when playing.Today was just such a day I was out detecting in an old Baseball Diamond that had fallen into disrepair and was rarely used anymore.Within 30 minutes I got a familiar tone on my Garret AT PRO, thinking it inured like gold but could be junk I cut a plug in the sod about 2 inches deep handout popped this beauty a 10k GoldClass Ring the date on the side said 2007 and the school was just 2 blocks away.
I notice their was a name engraved on the inside of the ring and thought it would be great if I could return it to its owner. On went the detective hat, Since my wife used to work for the school division I had her call in some favours and we located Chelsea no longer a student but now a teacher at a different school.I contacted her and told her about the ring recovery and had her come over to pick it up. She was thrilled to see it again and explained that she had lost it in 2008 and had gone back with friends and search for 2 hours with no luck. The Ring Finders pull through again, returning smiles and emotionally valuable items.