I got a text message about 9:30pm on July 4th stating they had lost their wedding band/engagement set in the ocean earlier that day and to please call when I had the chance. I immediately called back and talked with Lyndsey who said her and her husband Joshua have been married for just two weeks and they were on their honeymoon and it’s now officially a disaster. She gave me the hotel name and the address and I was on my way. With it being the 4th of July I knew the beach was going to be packed with both locals and tourist watching the firework displays and parking was going to be a big problem. Surprisingly I think I found the only remaining spot on the whole beach in one of the hotel parking lots and snatched it up hoping my car would still be there when I was done.
I met Lyndsey and Josh on the beach and we walked down to the water where she showed me about where she lost it while playing catch, as she put it, “with a stupid little yellow ball they bought”. Lyndsey said she was in water up to her thighs when she felt the ring fall off after catching the ball. She showed me a picture of her beautiful ring that was a two piece set where the engagement ring sits inside the wedding band. I was faced with a little bit of a dilemma because the tide was still high and my go to machine for water hunting is my White’s PI which is in the shop for repairs, and my back up machine is an AT Pro which can’t get wet much above the coil. The AT PRO is a great machine in the wet and dry sand but not so much in the water especially with heavy surf conditions. I was making the best of it but getting a lot of false target hits and not making any progress. After about 30 mins I got out of the water and moved back to the wet sand and started another grid search following the tide out. After 3 hours of searching I came up empty and called it a night at 1am. After staying up most of the night trying to figure out a better game plan for finding her ring at the next low tide I sent her an e-mail asking for a little help. Looking at the tide tables for the 4th and 5th, I asked her if she would go into the water at 10:55 that morning and walk out to waist deep water and then mark off the number of steps to a stationary item on the beach, which happened to be the beach access sign. She gladly compiled which ultimately got us in the right spot. Around 10am I got a call from Matt Fry (TRF Myrtle Beach) saying he’d received a text from a girl who had lost her ring in North Myrtle Beach and passing it off to me. After comparing the text messages we realized both came from Lyndsey who was trying to cover all her bases to get some help. Talking with Matt I told him about my PI and he offered up his Minelab CTX 3030 which I quickly accepted.
The temperature for the day was going to be above 100 degrees and looking at the area that needed to be searched I talked to Jim Brouwer to see if he would be willing to help thinking we could cover twice the area in half the time getting us out of the heat quicker, things don’t always work out as planned!!! As always, he was raring to go, GOD bless him!!! We met on the beach at 1pm and I marked off the 105 steps (baby steps for me) that Lyndsey had done earlier. This put us 10 feet from the life guard chair that was sitting in the middle of our search area. Jim and I grid searched in all 4 directions for a good 3 hours with very few targets and no ring. Finally Jim moved closer to the life guard chair and bam. I heard him holler at me and as soon as I looked over at him I immediately recognized his expression. I walked over and he dropped the ring in my hand – oh oh, he only had the wedding band and not the engagement ring which had fallen out at some point. We figured the engagement ring had to be within inches of the wedding band so we expanded his 5 inch round, 3 inch deep hole into a 3-4 foot round by 2 foot deep hole. Nothing!! We did another 10X10 ft grid search around the hole that included moving the life guard stand with the life guard’s permission, then expanded it to 20X20 and still nothing. We rechecked all the low, water filled (runnels) holes close and still nothing. We know the engagement ring is there somewhere but after another hour we came up blank. We figured the engagement ring separated from the wedding band and settled in the sand while the wedding band rolled around and then settled. So now it’s just a matter of finding where the engagement ring settled. I’m hoping there’s a part 2 to this story real soon and plan on going out this afternoon with my AT Pro and see if I can come up with it.
After finding the wedding band I took a picture and sent it to Lyndsey and got a response of “oh my gosh!!!!” We met up later and although we hadn’t found the engagement ring she was still extremely happy saying the wedding band signifies the married and is what it’s all about.
Lyndsey and Josh, I’ll continue to search for that engagement ring and hopefully come up with it soon. Thank you both so much for trusting in me to help find your treasure and for the very generous reward.
Matt, thanks for the use of the 3030, it looks like a great machine in the right hands. For me though, it was like buying a new car – I know how to drive but it has too many bells and whistles which with time and practice I’m sure I could learn.
Jim, what can I say buddy – Thank you again for your help!!!!
Thanks for reading my blog.