The other day I got a late message from Randi asking for help over in Orange Beach. Her husband Brayden was throwing a ball out in the Gulf and when the ball hit his left hand he watched as his wedding band dropped into the Gulf. They enlisted the help of some friends to look for an hour but didn’t have any success. When I spoke to Randi on the phone I told her that was my specialty and I’d be glad to help. That afternoon I drove over to Orange Beach and realized that it was at Romar House. They are wonderful people there and sure enough when I went inside they remembered me helping some other guests and immediately gave me a temporary parking pass. When I came back out I met Brayden and he quickly filled me in and explained that he had only been married since October. I told him that we had to find his ring and it was so new it was still shiny. 😃 When we got to the beach, Randi and several of their friends were lined up in their chairs ready to watch “the show”. I waded out with Brayden and one of his buddies waved us a bit more East. I took about 4 more steps to the East and then based on the tide charts, I took three more steps to the South and yelled over to Brayden not to move so I had a reference point. I literally went about 5 feet and heard a great tone. I got it on the first scoop and yelled over to Brayden, “It’s that easy” with a big smile. I didn’t realize that Randi was videoing but it definitely shows the excitement better than I can explain it. Thanks Brayden and Randi for trusting me. Now you have an awesome story for the rest of your long and happy marriage.
Imagine that you are getting married in two weeks. Imagine that your fiancé proposed to you with a beautiful diamond ring. Now imagine that you have come down to Fort Walton Beach to celebrate with friends before the wedding and you dropped the ring in the Gulf of Mexico. That is definitely a problem! 😳. To make matters worse, this is no ordinary ring and as Hillary and her friends explained it to me, I knew I had to help. This ring had an amazing story because the main diamond actually came from the Grandmother of Hillary’s fiancé. It had been with their family when they fled Germany all the way back before the Holocaust. They had come over and became part of a small German settlement in Mississippi called Gluckstadt. To build a life and pass down your ring to your Grandchildren so they could start a new life with their loved one is a true American dream. Was I going to let this American story end today??? On the 4th of July??? Not if I could help it! Hillary and I came up with a plan and I agreed to meet her at sunrise to get past the Holiday traffic and all of the people in the gulf. When I got there I saw that the waves were pretty big and they were crashing into the sand right where Hillary felt like she lost the ring. I headed out and immediately got knocked back so hard that I took the sunglasses around my neck back to the beach. I came back out and made it a little way before I again got slammed and my headphones went flying off of my head. As I chased the ear cups I walked back to the beach. Hillary had gone back to the room so I asked her two friends how tall Hillary is. They said she is 5’2”, I smiled and said “guys, I’m almost 6’3” and I weigh 220lbs, there’s no way she could have been walking around out there if the waves were similar in the days before.” They quickly said that Hillary was nervous I might miss it and was erring on the safe side. They both felt like she had lost it closer in. I explained that I would start shallow and move out but I promised I would go as far as needed to find it. I took a few passes as people started to come out to the beach and I got to the area where they had pointed. I got a high tone and battled to scoop it in the surf. I dig every signal on a return so unfortunately this turned out to be a dime but I only went about five feet further when I heard the tone I wanted. Again it was a battle but I was able to gingerly lift the scoop and let the water and sand rush out of it. Staring back at me was a beautiful diamond ring and I was absolutely thrilled. I started walking in with a big smile on my face and they gradually realized that I had it. Hillary was in disbelief until she got it back on her finger and even then she still couldn’t quite believe I had found it. I am so glad that I could help keep this amazing American story going and even add a new chapter that their family will remember. Congratulations Hillary and Happy Independence Day everyone.
Felicia and Scott have been down from Tennessee enjoying this beautiful Orange Beach weather. The first day here Scott got a little sunburned so the next day Felicia was being extra careful to put plenty of sunscreen on the little ones. Like a lot of people, she took her ring off so she wouldn’t get it too greasy and she slipped it into her swimsuit thinking it would only be there for a second or two. Sure enough, moments later she had forgotten all about the ring as she rushed into the gulf to play with the kids in the waves. A few hours later as they were walking to their car, she noticed it was gone and that’s when panic ensued. You can imagine the frantic search that followed and understand why she got up at the crack of dawn to go comb the beach the following morning. Luckily for her there was a nice man that saw her looking and suggested the Ringfinders service. She was quickly searching on the internet and before she knew it she had my name and phone number. When she called and told me everything I knew that it was most likely in the water. I told them I was on the way. When I got there it was pretty crowded but they had a very good idea where they had gone into the Gulf. I explained that I would go back and forth in a grid pattern to make sure I covered everything but not to worry if it took a little while. I saw them both looking anxiously on as I dug a couple of coins shaking my head that no, that wasn’t it. Then I got the tone I wanted to hear and I very gently took a deeper scoop so I wouldn’t scratch anything. As the sand rushed out of my scoop I saw the telltale glint of gold and diamonds. I turned and smiled and gave them a nod and Felicia came rushing to meet me at the water’s edge. Now Scott and Felicia have been together since the eighth grade so I knew she was going to be excited but I have to say that Felicia wins for loudest, most excited shouts of joy ever. She screamed for joy so long that several people asked if we had gotten engaged. 😃. Gotta love it, that’s why I do what I do. This is a beautiful ring and I’m glad I could return it to such a beautiful couple. Congrats Scott and Felicia. God Bless!
Today was such a cool day because I got to help out a fellow detectorist. 😳👍 Allan and Ami came down for the weekend to celebrate their 16th anniversary and unfortunately Murphy’s Law struck quickly. As they were waiting to check in they decided to wade out in the beautiful Gulf waters. Allan was explaining to Ami that she had to be very careful out in the deeper water because your ring can fall right off your hand. As he touched his left hand to illustrate his point… you guessed it, Kerplunk! Allan’s ring fell straight down in the water and quickly buried in the sand. Luckily they emailed me and although I didn’t get the email until late last night, we touched base first thing this morning. I quickly started getting ready and unfortunately tragedy struck. I badly pulled a muscle in my upper back and had to be helped to lie down. My wife sent Allan and Ami a text explaining that I was hurt and there was no way I could come today. They are very nice people and were more concerned with my health than anything else. I took some Motrin and laid still for a few hours until I dozed off. I woke up and realized that whatever had popped in my back was back where it was supposed to be and although I was really sore, I gingerly went to the front yard to see if I could swing my detector without too much pain. It hurt but I knew Allan and Ami were leaving town at 2pm and I really wanted to send his ring with them. I gave them a call and luckily they were still here and about to have lunch at Pegleg’s. I was quickly enroute to the beach. Well Allan has done a lot of land detecting and he had tried to mark the location of the ring when it fell and did a great job. I always do a larger area and overlap my passes multiple ways because I have learned what Allan was about to; it’s never where it’s supposed to be in the water. 😃. The first thing I found was an iPhone X in a Lifeproof case complete with multiple credit cards (stay tuned for that return story this week 😉). Although it definitely wasn’t their ring, I think it gave Ami some hope that I really could find stuff buried in the sand out in the water. It wasn’t too many passes before I was worried that Allan might be getting concerned that I was in the wrong area. But then I heard that beautiful sound!!! I called to Allan and waved him out to join me. He looked shocked when I told him that I thought I had located it and asked if he would like to do the “honors” and “dig it up”. He told me to go ahead and I very gently dug a large scoop full of sand. When I verified with my machine that I had whatever it was in my scoop, I just smiled and handed the scoop to him. Well, he smiled even bigger when he washed out the sand and saw his ring gleaming back at him. It was a great moment when he quickly put that ring back where it belongs and began striding back to Ami to show her that their anniversary weekend just got a whole lot better. 😃
Thank you Allan and Ami for letting me help you and for your patience and understanding when I was hurt this morning. Thank you also to the very nice front desk crew (especially Gillian) at the Holiday Inn Pensacola Beach who allowed me to park on property and even helped us celebrate when Allan showed them his ring! 👍👍👍