On Wednesday, Aug. 3rd I woke up to a text message saying, “Good morning Mr. Wren, A gentleman on the beach (native of Scranton) recommended you. My sister lost her wedding ring in the surf yesterday afternoon. It’s in N. Myrtle Beach, in front of 817 S. Ocean Blvd. If you have time, I would appreciate your assistance. Regards David.” I called the number associated with the text so we could discuss the details. David said that she lost it at approximately 1 p.m. the previous day, which was about 2 hours after high tide. After a few more questions and answers, I told him I’d be there at 3 p.m. After thinking about the summer crowds, I texted him that I’d be there at 2:30 so I could be ahead of the crowds moving down the beach as the tide was going out. About an hour later I got an email from Daniel saying in part, “Hi we need your help to find a wedding ring and my mom lost her ring. She fell out from the sand under water and ring thick gold ring.” I asked him to call me so I could get more details. When the phone rang it was an interpreter for the hearing impaired. Through the interpreter I asked for a hotel name and street address. The interpreter said that Daniel would look up the name and address and email it to me. Meanwhile, I called Matt Fry, TRF Myrtle Beach and let him know I was working on a possible ring call for him and gave him what details I had. When the email came in from Daniel the address was the same as the address David had given me. I called David real quick and asked him if he knew Daniel, thinking 2 lost rings at the same resort was highly improbable. David said Daniel was his sister’s son. This made sense now; I emailed Daniel back and told him his Uncle David had already contacted me and that I was going to be there at 2:30. I thought that was incredible that this young man was trying so hard to take care of his mother and make sure she got her ring back.
I got there on time and met David in the parking garage. We walked out on the beach, and luckily there weren’t too many tourists on the beach when I got there. We made our way to where Michelle, David’s sister that lost her ring, Daniel, and David’s younger brother Andy were sitting. I got the full story from Michelle on what happened and the general area of where she lost it. I grabbed my Equinox 800 and sand scoop and headed in the water. I did a grid search from the top of the slope out to where the water was breaking over the sand bar. I worked my grid to the north back and forth with only an occasional pull tab or bottle cap. When I finished searched of the probable area, I took a break and asked a few more questions. I asked Daniel what he remembered because he pulled his mother up out of the water when she got hit by a wave and knocked over. Daniel moved me further north about 20 yards, so I started from there working back south. Still no luck!!! I took another break while I contemplated my next move. By now I’d been in the water for almost 2 hours, no biggie, but I was running out of real estate to search. I went back to where Daniel had moved me and did a few more grid lines to the north. Still nothing, so I worked parallel to the beach moving out to the breakers and south past where David had set the southernmost border. As I made my turn to head back towards the beach, I got a big hit on a target. Knowing I was looking for a heavy yellow gold wedding ring, I was expecting a VDI (visual display indicator) around 15-17. The VDI on this target was jumping all over the place but did get an occasional 16/17 as I ran the coil over the target. I did the bouncing trick with the coil to rule out a bottle cap. Convinced it wasn’t a bottle cap, I dug a couple of scoops of sand to get the target out. Once I had the target in the scoop, I swished the scoop around in the water to remove the sand. BOOM!!!! After 2 hours of searching, I had Michelle’s wedding ring in the scoop.
Now for the surprise, I made my way back up to where everyone had been sitting since I started. I asked Michelle to come over to where I was standing so I could show her the area I’ve searched, not that she didn’t already know. As she’s walking over to me, I slipped her ring on my right index finger. When she got to me, I held up my arm to point to the areas I searched, she immediately saw her ring and the tears started flowing as she buried her head on my shoulder. I think we all shed a few tears just seeing her overwhelming joy. There are no words to express how important it is to give something back to somebody that they thought was lost forever, especially when it’s something that has been passed down for 4 generations. Michelle’s husband’s great grandfather gave this very ring to his new bride many many years ago.
David and Daniel – Thank you for caring so much about your sister and mother that you took the extra steps to help get her ring back to her.
Michelle – I’m so happy I could return your treasure to you.