Last week Jim Wren was contacted through his Ring Finders Face Book. Savannah had sent him a note about her husband Kirk losing his wedding band on their honeymoon in Myrtle Beach. Jim is the Ring Finder that covers North Myrtle Beach and area beaches over the border in North Carolina. Since the ring search was in Myrtle Beach, Jim graciously called me and asked if I wanted to cover it. I called Savannah, who had returned to her home in Kentucky, and got all the particulars on the beach area that needed to be searched. I assured a distraught Savannah that we had a good chance at finding this ring. I called Jim Wren back and explained that the ring was lost in the waters edge at low tide 4 days ago, and that I felt like time and darkness was going to be an issue. I wanted to cover a lot of sand quickly, so I asked Jim if he wanted to join me. Jim and I searched into the darkness against an angry rising tide. We were getting several signals but were having a hard time staying on the targets as the waves pushed us around. Jim and I talked and we both felt like the ring was there, but the struggle against the elements was hindering our efforts. We agreed to work the area again 2 days later. We met in the morning’s low tide before the wind started tormenting the water. I jumped into the water about waist deep and started north – south. Jim started an east – west grid that had him going from ankle to waist deep water. About half way through the grid Jim descended into the water just in front of me. I saw Jim concentrating on a target so I gave him some room to not give his detector any feedback from mine. Jim shouted my direction as he started moving toward the dry beach. From 30 feet away I could make out the black silhouette of the ring through the holes in his sand scoop. Bingo! This was the ring we were looking for. Jim graciously handed me the ring and told be to call Savannah and then write it up. Last year I helped Jim on a ring search where I found the ring. I handed the ring to Jim and told him to write it up. I think he was giving me pay back. However, the most important part of this ring hunt was that we got to send a message and picture to Savannah, back in Kentucky, and let her know the good news. Kirk’s wedding band would be back on his finger in few days. Savannah was stunned and happy of that fact. She and Kirk had just gone to the jewelers that afternoon to order another ring. Fortunately they were able to cancel the order the next morning. Savannah and Kirk, good luck in your future together. May all of your stories have happy endings. Thanks for entrusting Jim and I with this ring search. Thanks Jim for your excellent help.
I received a phone call this morning from Gina and she explained that she needed some help. Gina told me that she lost her 14kt gold wedding band and engagement ring, that had been soldered together, on the beach while playing with her two lovely daughters and husband Chris. Gina explained that she lost the ring set on Monday. She had contacted another metal detectorist from on line that has a name very simalar to The Ring Finders in our Myrtle Beach area. Gina made arrangements to meet this other detectorist on Tuesday to see if they could find the rings. After waiting most of Tuesday for a phone call, she called him back. She had been stood up as the fellow told her he had other things to do. On Wednesday Gina and Chris rented a metal detector and tried for several hours with no luck. Gina felt sick for having lost her rings and she made one more effort to find some help. Gina found The Ring Finders on line late Thursday night and followed the directory to my web-page.
I met Gina, Chris and their lovely girls at Huntington Beach State Park, about 25 miles south of Myrtle Beach, at 10:45 on Friday morning’s low tide. Gina told me that she felt that she could use a detector so along with my Minelab CTX 30 – 30, I brought my Goldbug Pro so she could help in the search. I gave her a run down on the machine and turned her loose. Gina worked the 60 x 80 yard grid line parallel to the water as I started the grid from top to bottom of the beach.After 1 1/2 hours we exhausted the grid lines and started focusing on where people were sitting inside of the grid. Gina was close to giving up but I told her to stay positive. Graciously we asked each group if they could move as we explained what we were doing. After getting a few groups to move I put back on the head phones. It wasn’t but a few minutes when I heard a scream through my headphones. I turned to see my metal detector and sand scoop lying in the sand at Gina’s feet and she had her hand over her mouth as she was crying. Cheers erupted from people on the beach. I started laughing as I realized that this is just another form of “The ring dance”. After tears, laughs, high fives, and of course hugs and kisses we headed for our cars. All the way to the parking lot Chris just kept saying “No Way”. As it turns out Chris told Gina that if we found the ring he would ask her to marry him all over again. So, I had the added thrill of watching Chris propose to Gina in front of the Ranger Station. Way to go Chris and Gina, and thank you for the handsom reward. A prayer for traveling mercies back to Michigan.
This is part two of this search. In part one you will see that I had my behind handed to me in two previous hunts for this ring. I posted part one to show that sometime we don’t find them all. I felt like I needed to regroup and approach this third, and possibly final, search for this lost wedding band. This being my first search for a ring from TheRingFinders.com directory had me feeling like I really needed a win. I knew that this was my last chance. Jason Garvin sent me a video that his wife took while they were at the beach the day the ring was lost. Looking at the video I realized that I was not in the right spot based on Jason and my first phone conversation. I hunted again hunted again on Tuesday after seeing the video. Again I was not successful. On Wed. I had the idea of taking a still image of the Garden City Pier, south of Myrtle Beach, from the video and taking it with me to help find this lost gold ring. I also felt like I needed some help from a metal detecting expert. Jim Brouwer, author of the book “Gold Beneath the Waves: Treasure Hunting the Surf and Sand“, is a friend and mentor when it comes to finding lost jewelry on the beach. Jim agreed to help me Saturday morning, one week after Jason lost his family heirloom wedding band. Jim approaches the beach with a scientific mind and I needed all the help I could get. We hit the beach at 6:00 AM to catch the 7:30 low tide. I pulled the picture of the pier from my pocket as we stood on the beach watching the sun begin to rise from the Atlantic Ocean. Sounds warm doesn’t it? It was not. It was 50 degrees, with a water temperature of 65, and the water was not “flat” as the surf report predicted, and it was raining. Jim and I looked at the picture and lined up the light poles, roof lines and pilings as we moved back and forth, up and down the beach. We finally had a visual line of the place that Mrs. Garvin was sitting on the beach when she shot the video. Whoa, another 100 yards up the beach than I had hunted on Tues. We took 5 pieces of PVC pipe and placed our center stake where we were standing. Jim placed each of the next four north and south at 15 paces giving us four grid areas. As we talked about our strategy Jim explained that last Saturday was a New Moon phase and that the knee to thigh deep water that Jason lost his ring was now waist to belly deep. I didn’t like the sound of that. Jim had a wet suit and I did not. This didn’t sound like fun! We hit the water working parallel to the beach using the pier as a visual to try to keep our grid lines straight. Jim on the north grid and me on the south. I worked the first grid area from belly back to thigh deep water and moved to my second set of stakes. I moved back out to belly deep water, trying to keep my head dry from the two foot waves, as I started my second grid. As I approached the center stake area I noticed that Jim was ahead of me in his grid search. As I got to the center stake area I got a signal on the Minelab CTX 30 – 30. A little higher than I wanted to see but it was my only signal in 40 minutes, I was going to dig it. Trying to stay positioned on the target while the waves were smacking me around was difficult to say the least. I waited for a break in the waves and sent the scoop as deep as I could into the sand. I had to bend to shoulder deep to get enough leverage to dislodge the scoop. I planted my right foot in the hole as I raised the scoop to the surface. Staring back at me was a beautiful 6mm gold ring just like Jason described. I headed for the beach and shouted to Jim that I had it. Jim’s chin dropped to the water and he looked like he was hit with a hammer. I didn’t even try to take the ring from the scoop until I was on dry land. Jim came in behind me as I removed the ring. “Is that it”. “Let’s see if it has the right inscription”. I cleaned the ring and then let out a Big Whoop! Jim gave me a high five and then I proceeded to do “the ring dance”. Now people on the beach thought we were really crazy. A “special thanks” to Jim for his help and knowledge given to this effort. Jim posted this hunt in his own words and pictures on TreasureDepot.com Sand and Surf. Another Page of Smiles in the Ring Finders Book…. Jason’s ring is on its’ way to Missouri.