ring finder

Gold Wedding Band…Found in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Yard

  • from Washington (District of Columbia, United States)

Robert’s Handsome 14 Karat Gold Wedding Band Shining Brightly Once Again!

Michelle So Happily Enjoys the Exciting Reunion Between Robert and His Handsome Gold Wedding Band!

BRIAN RUDOLPH, LOST ITEM RECOVERY SPECIALIST (LAND, WATER, SAND, HOUSES & VEHICLES) WILL FIND YOUR LOST KEEPSAKE! CALL ASAP (301) 466-8644!

I received an email from a gentleman named Robert who was inquiring about my services in helping him find his lost wedding band. I was quite excited to help the man in his efforts to find the missing ring which he had hoped was still hidden somewhere on his property.

Almost a year earlier, Robert was working on a project around the outside of his place. He was removing a tremendous amount of ivy that had been growing along the outer brick walls of his Harrisburg, Pennsylvania house. The homeowner believed his yellow gold family heirloom wedding band must have slipped off his finger and got lost somewhere on the property. The other possibility was that the wood chip cutter that he was using during his outside project could have gotten the best of the poor piece of gold and perhaps was shredded into smithereens! He couldn’t be sure what exactly happened to the band.

Robert searched all around the bushes near the foundation of the house. He got a metal detector and searched over the grassy areas in his front yard and along the side yards. Eventually he took his search for the missing ring to the back of the house and looked heavily in the weeds and withered ivy that had been removed off the house and dragged with a tarp all the way to the farthest parts of the property. Unfortunately, all of his diligent efforts did not lead Robert to uncovering the lost wedding band that he so very much cherished.

This particular yellow gold keepsake was very special to the family because it was previously worn by Robert’s deceased father-in-law. Robert’s wife, Michelle, was gifted her mother’s wedding band which matched her father’s ring that was gifted to Robert. They loved the idea that they could wear their parent’s rings because not only did they have sentimental connections as family heirlooms, but the couple was also very happy that they were saving the environment by wearing gold that had already been manufactured 53-plus years earlier. They shared with me that they didn’t want to buy gold jewelry because they said it was harming the environment with today’s mining and production of gold throughout the world.

When Robert and Michelle couldn’t find the wedding band anywhere on their large property, they had to put aside the idea that they would ever see the ring again. However, almost a year later, hope would finally emerge from the depths of despair. As Robert was looking for a class to take online, he stumbled upon an ad that I had posted regarding my metal detecting service for people in need of finding lost items. He figured that he had nothing to lose because if I didn’t find the missing item, the client would not be responsible for paying me anything other than my travel expense. The two of us made arrangements to talk on the phone and by the time we were done, Robert scheduled a date for me to come out and help him find his missing wedding band.

I will never forget that particular Father’s Day as I drove two hours north from Maryland to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. It was definitely a hot one outside. I didn’t leave the house without packing a large cooler filled with drinks and plenty of ice. Each mile I drove, I got more excited about this mission to help this complete stranger who lived so far away solve the mystery as to where his wedding band ended up. Of course, there was no guarantee that I would find the ring, but at the least I could bring Robert some closure if I didn’t find the keepsake. He could then move on and not wonder if he should continue searching for something that was clearly gone forever.

I arrived at Robert and Michelle’s lovely 1800s estate sometime in the early afternoon. The moment that I got out of the car, I was shown around the property and Robert explained to me exactly what he was doing during that weekend when he was stripping all of that ivy off the side of the house. He explained to me how he transported the ivy on a tarp from the front lawn all the way to the far back of the house. Once I was completely oriented as to all of Robert’s whereabouts throughout his weekend project almost a year earlier, I knew exactly where I needed to search if there was a chance that the ring was hiding somewhere outside on his property.

Once we were finished with the tour around the house, I got busy pulling out all of my necessary search equipment that I needed for that Sunday’s adventure. I made sure that the ice cooler was near to me at all times because it was a real scorcher of a day. Being that it was Father’s Day, Robert and Michelle would be hanging out with the children and hosting a few close friends that would be coming over to celebrate the day together. Their little party would be in the backyard over to one side where I was not going to be detecting. From time to time I would have young visitors come near to watch what I was doing, as well as a couple of neighbors that were walking by who also wanted to see what I was doing.

There were so many areas around the house that I needed to search. I started metal detecting in the most logical place before tackling more of the questionable locations. With a 6 inch coil (which is the disc at the end of the metal detector’s shaft), I slowly and carefully metal detected in the bushes that were up against the front brick of the house. There was a good chance that the ring fell off of Robert’s finger when he was pulling the ivy down off the house. It could have gotten lost under or somewhere around the bushes that were up against the brick. I was using a smaller coil because it would help to eliminate any electrical interference that the detector might otherwise pick up. It also was perfect for searching the hard-to-get-to-places with this smaller disc. Another advantage of using the 6 inch coil is that when you are detecting near the foundation of the house, there are lots of nails and small pieces of aluminum scattered all about. Therefore, one needs to use equipment that can separate out multiple target signals and differentiate between one from another. I found that the smaller coil worked very effectively to help me identify what was a potential target and what was not. I found all sorts of pieces of metal in the bushes and around the foundation of the house. Plenty of roof nails, screws, bottle caps, pull tabs, coins, little pieces of aluminum, and much more. I was extremely happy that I was able to overcome quite a bit of electrical interference as I was metal detecting along the edge of the foundation. When I finished detecting under all of the bushes in the front of the house and up against the foundation, I was completely positive that the ring was not anywhere in that vicinity.

The next area that I metal detected was the front lawn. I chose that particular area because once Robert removed the ivy from the brick, he laid the ivy on the grass in the front yard and on the side yards before hauling loads of the plant onto a tarp where he dragged it to the backyard. I wanted to make sure that the ring didn’t get lost in the grass in front of the house. It was a fairly small front yard so it didn’t take long to complete all of my grid lines from east to west and then back again. Though I found a few coins (mostly nickels), there was no gold to be found. It was at that point for me to move to the sides of the house.

During the five or so hours of search time, I would take occasional breaks because of how scorched I was out there on that very hot summer afternoon. Though I knew this could be a very long search day, I did not waver at all regarding my confidence that if the ring was lost outside on the property that I would find it somehow…somewhere. It was therefore extremely important to keep my body hydrated throughout the recovery process.

I gathered up my equipment and moved over to the right side of the house and detected in and around the bushes, as well as all across the flowerbeds along the length of the house leading towards the backyard. I found some interesting pieces of metal here and there, but didn’t find what I was looking for. Then, when I finished my search throughout that area, I moved to the grassy section on the other side of the walkway that leads to the back of the house. This section was adjacent to the neighbor’s yard. I wondered if the ring slipped off of Robert’s finger while he was working on the side of the house and perhaps it landed on the grassy area just before transporting the dead ivy from that side of the house. I grid searched that whole section of the lawn, but still no ring was detected on my machine.

Now that the front and right side of the house was completed, I turned to the left side of the house and began to metal detect all along the foundation of the house, in the flowerbeds, and even in the window well as I did on the other side of the house. I continued to go back and forth between my 15 inch coil for larger, more open areas of detecting where there were less trashy conditions, and the 6 inch sniper coil to work around hard to get to places. I was so hoping that I would discover the piece of gold on that left side of the house, but once again, nothing turned up.

Sweat was pouring down my face and the smoldering temperatures outside forced me to take yet another break once I finished that final side of the house (Robert said that there was no ivy removed on the rear side of the house). I sat next to my cooler, which was near the sidewalk that led down the side of Robert and Michelle’s front walkway and cooled off with a couple of drinks. While everybody was celebrating Father’s Day in the backyard, I thought to myself how wonderful it would be to recover the gold ring for Robert on such a special day as this one. I knew that I only had the backyard remaining to check and I tried to not let any doubts creep into my mind regarding the possibility that the ring never ended up outside or that it may have gotten chewed up in the wood chip chopper last year.

At that point in the afternoon, I believe I had metal detected approximately 3.5 hours of search time. I recall Robert coming over to me, asking how things were going. He seemed like he was doubtful that the ring might still be recoverable with just the backyard to search, but I told him that I find rings in the very last minutes of searching. I shared that I was quite encouraged that there were plenty of places to search in the backyard and perhaps that’s where we would find the missing treasure.

Once I finished cooling off, I carried my gear to the backyard and began detecting on the right side of the property (if you are facing away from the house). Robert had showed me a section where he had dumped some of the ivy before carrying it off to another location later that same day when he was working on the project. The weeds were kind of tall so I needed to be really careful not to miss anything along the ground. I pulled up a very old children’s gardening tool, an old matchbox car and a few other miscellaneous pieces of metal. By the time I finished grid searching that right section of the yard, I was 100% confident that Robert’s wedding band was not lost in that area.

As I moved into the five hour mark of searching, the sections that I had left to metal detect were becoming more limited. For most item recovery specialists, we don’t give up until we know that we conquered all of the territory necessary to determine whether or not the lost object was actually dropped in the area(s) that was suspected. I made sure that there was no chance that I somehow missed a spot where the wedding band might have gotten lost. I moved towards the lower area of the backyard which steadily moved on a decline and then got a bit steeper towards the bottom of the hill. I made sure that I investigated all of the hillside going down towards a path where people walked by on a regular basis. Robert had told me that the shredder was down the hill in that region, so I was interested in knowing if I would pick up any of the gold pieces if the ring got placed with the ivy inside the wood chip cutter. More metal objects were discovered along that hillside, but still there was no gold to be found.

I slowly moved my way from the right side of the backyard over towards the left side (if you are facing away from the house). My gridlines were perfectly set as I moved towards the path at the edge of the property and then moved my way back up the hill and continued until I cleared all of that territory leading to the left side of the backyard. It was at that point that I knew we were running out of real estate and my chances of finding the ring were getting slimmer and slimmer.

As I shared earlier, Robert had taken me to all of the spots where he carried, dumped and or cut up the ivy. When he took me to the last area where he dumped some of the ivy (the load that never got cut by the wood chopper), he explained that that was the only other place where he had moved about when working on that particular project. I knew that this was the last part of this search from what he had indicated to me earlier when we took a tour around his property. My last remaining section to detect was probably an area that was 35 feet x 20 feet on the left side of the backyard (if you are facing away from the house). There was quite a bit of brush like in other spots that I had previously detected. In other areas there was just old leaves and overgrown plant life. Truly I was hoping for the best outcome. And yet I probably was having thoughts that this might end up being a “closure story” rather than a successful one. But I didn’t give up hope. I kept metal detecting along my gridlines and every time I got a target signal I checked it out to make sure that I wasn’t missing anything important.

I know it is a cliché to use the phrase “all of a sudden”. However, that’s exactly what happened in this particular story. All of a sudden I hit a fantastic signal that was close to the surface, but slightly below the ground. I had gotten similar target signals just a bit earlier when I uncovered a coin spill of pennies and nickels that must have fallen out of someone’s pocket many years earlier. I wasn’t going to rush to excitement knowing that I had a similar signal earlier all to find out that I had only found a whole bunch of coins that were in the same range as this particular hit. Yet, I stayed optimistic as I pulled out my pinpointer (a hand-held metal detector to examine the specific area where my machine was picking up the particular object). I knelt down on the ground and used my effective tool to zero-in on exactly where the object was buried. Then, when I became confident as to where the object was exactly buried, I move some of the leaves out of the way and there before my eyes I saw the most beautiful sight! It was a yellow gold wedding band that could partially be seen above the soil! I was ecstatic! Even though I have found many items in the very last few seconds of my searches, I have to admit that I was quite surprised that I pulled this ring so close to the end of this task! There were absolutely no other places left for me to search other than a few remaining feet on my gridline! This is why I love what I do so much because there are so many miracle stories that take place and I’m always getting surprised at the next one! I thanked the Lord profusely as I was still knelt down on the ground, staring at this amazing sight! What a moment that was! I couldn’t wait to reveal this precious piece of gold to Robert and his beloved wife!

Robert and Michelle’s Matching Wedding Bands that Were Previously Worn by Michelle’s Parents Since 1967!

The Excited Couple Shares Both Rings Finally Reunited Once More After Almost a Year Apart!

The family’s party had wrapped up perhaps 45 minutes before I had discovered the ring, so I had the pleasure of walking up to the house to call Robert out to give him a fun fake-out in unveiling this most wonderful surprise! He and Michelle were beyond shocked at what I uncovered far out in the backyard, close to the bottom of the hill! In a matter of minutes, this handsome wedding band that had been in the family since the 1960s, would finally be reunited alongside its matching counterpart (Michelle’s wedding ring that she had been wearing since her mother’s ring was passed on to her years earlier). It brought me so much joy to be able to preserve the sentimental journeys of both the couple’s parents and Robert and Michelle’s personal marital story through what was represented with those two matching rings that were handed down years ago!

I will never forget that adventure in which I embarked upon, driving 250 miles round-trip to another state far away, hoping to solve a mystery that had remained an open case for nearly a year. Robert was so happy that he made that first call to me! Even more so, that he eventually gave the “green light” to move forward with the recovery efforts in attempting to make what seemed as an impossible situation…actually ending up being possible!

If you would like to view the SEARCH VIDEO and the fantastic RING REVEAL pertaining to this search, please subscribe to my YouTube channel and you will be notified when the search video is uploaded onto YouTube.

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If you would like to watch the SEARCH VIDEO and the RING REVEAL pertaining to this story, the video will be uploaded soon. To receive a NOTIFICATION letting you know when the video is uploaded to YOUTUBE: go to YOUTUBE by CLICKING THE LINK BELOW or OPEN your YOUTUBE APP on your device. In the SEARCH BAR, type: THE RING RETURNER, click SUBSCRIBE and lastly, CLICK ON THE “BELL” to receive NOTIFICATIONS when this latest search video is available to view! 

BRIAN’S YOUTUBE CHANNEL LINK: 

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CALL BRIAN RUDOLPH WITH THE RING FINDERS AT (301) 466-8644!

VISIT THE RING FINDER’S WEBSITE TO READ MORE OF BRIAN’S SUCCESSFUL SEARCH STORIES at:

https://theringfinders.com/Brian.Rudolph/

HE WILL RETURN TO YOU WHAT HAS BEEN LOST!

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How to find a lost ring in the sand, Ormond Beach, Fl….Found and Returned to owner.

  • from Sanford (Florida, United States)
Contact:

Mike McInroe…Ring Finder Specialist…Call ASAP Anytime…321-363-6029

Have you ever wondered what happens to a ring that is lost at the beach in the sand? One might think it is next to impossible to find it again after the waves and sand move and wash with the daily tides. And many a poor soul has walked away from such a loss thinking that there is no hope. But I have some really good news! Because there actually is allot of hope and a great possibility of recovering your lost item.

Connor was faced with a potentially devastating situation just this past weekend. He and some friends were enjoying an unusually warm day at Ormond Beach and before getting wet he decided to wrap his phone and his cherished high school class ring in his shirt and laid it on his friends towel. After a while they returned to their towels to dry off and unfortunately when Connor grabbed his shirt his ring somehow slipped out and into the sand and as they climbed into their vehicles he noticed his ring was not with his phone. Quickly he retraced his steps but could not find his ring. They tried raking the sand and even borrowed a friends low end metal detector but it simply made way too much noise so they gave up the search.

Connors mom posted on Next Door and some kind soul suggested The Ring Finders, so Lindsey sent me a text and thankfully I was available to drop what I was doing and after packing up my van with all my necessary equipment I headed to Ormond Beach. An hour later I met Connor and he showed me exactly where thought he was when he lost his ring. I set four corner flags out and began grid searching the dry sand hoping to find his lost class ring and after 30 minutes no ring. I had my Whites TDI Beach Hunter, metal detector set to dig all signals and continued expanding my search area quite a ways beyond where Connor indicated. Finally I started down onto the packed wet sand and 20 minutes later I got a banging signal. I decided to dig with my hand ensuring that I would not scratch or damage the item rather than use my metal scoop. I dug down at least five inches and still nothing was showing in the hole so I took my pin pointer and it indicated the target was very close. Another inch and I could see a silver rim–and I thought I must have found someone else’s lost ring–until I tried to pull the ring from its hiding place. And oh my goodness and thank you Lord, were the exact words that came out of my mouth! I quickly snapped some photos and sent them to Connor! Within minutes he drove up to claim his lost and now found treasure!

Here is what Mrs. Lindsey had to say. “I am crying happy tears over here! You are amazing! Thank you thank you! I am such a sentimental person and even though the ring isn’t that valuable, it is priceless to me! All his senior memories have been made wearing that ring. I just cant’t thank you enough! You truly are an angle! I wish I could give you more $ but please know our family will never forget what you have done for us! Thank you thank you! I will keep your info saved for life!!! I seriously can’t stop screaming and smiling!!! Lindsey”

Lost something and need help? Call ASAP–Anytime!

Mike McInroe…thankful to be a member of theringfinders.com

Lost High School Class Ring…Found on Celebrity Figure Skater, Dorothy Hamill’s Former Estate in Cockeysville, Maryland

  • from Washington (District of Columbia, United States)

Lauren’s Lovely Private High School Class Ring Shines Happily Once More!

Lauren Smiling From Ear to Ear as She Holds Her Cherished 14 Karat Gold Class Ring!

BRIAN RUDOLPH, LOST ITEM RECOVERY SPECIALIST (LAND, WATER, SAND, HOUSES & VEHICLES) WILL FIND YOUR LOST KEEPSAKE! CALL ASAP (301) 466-8644!

A woman named Janice was referred to me by someone who knew that I was on the elite international metal detectorist directory called THE RING FINDERS. She checked out my information and success stories regarding countless rings and other items that had been recovered throughout the last couple of years. That’s all it took to convince Janice that I was the one capable of finding her daughter’s lost 14 karat gold high school class ring.

Lauren had lost her class ring while hanging out with the family on a beautiful warm spring evening. They had a lovely picnic in the backyard of their gorgeous historical mansion located in Cockeysville, Maryland (17 miles from downtown Baltimore). The senior in high school, her sister, mother and father all sat at the picnic table overlooking the most perfect scenery of endless acres of grass, trees, streams and fields. The setting was simply paradise! Lauren asked her sister if she would hold onto her two rings (one of them was the gold class ring) while eating at the outside table. She obliged and put the jewelry in her short’s rear pocket.

After the family dinner picnic, the two girls went for a walk around the back of their estate, listening to music and enjoying each other’s company. They even ran around a bit, having the best time of close sister fellowship with a bit of exercise attached to their fun! Upon their return inside the mansion, Lauren requested her rings back from her sister. When her sister reached back into her rear short’s pocket to retrieve the two rings, there was only one ring to be found. The class ring had come out of the shorts during their time outside earlier that evening.

The family immediately switched into sleuth mode! Everyone headed down the grassy hill and over to the picnic table area to see if the yellow gold high school class ring could be spotted through the grass. They also looked around the hill area because Lauren’s sister had been carrying some of the dinner items back and forth from the kitchen to the picnic spot and then back up the hill again. Still, nothing was found. Flashlights and phone lights were used to look all over the field, and yet they still could not find the missing ring anywhere. There was so much territory to cover, and frankly I don’t think they knew where to begin because the ring could have fell out of Lauren’s sister’s shorts just about anywhere. The family tried to retrace the girls’ steps, but all of their efforts led to no avail. Eventually, they had to surrender their search attempt that night and figure out what their next plan of action would have to be.

Lauren’s mother, Janice, was really upset about the missing ring because it meant just as much to her as it did to Lauren. It represented a great accomplishment for her daughter and there was a lot of sentimentality attached to this particular class ring. She wanted to do everything possible to recover this beloved keepsake for her daughter. Instead of buying a metal detector (which neither her husband or herself knew how to operate effectively), Janice decided to contact a professional metal detectorist. This is where I come into the story. I had the pleasure of talking with Janice about the situation and I told her that if she invited me to their property, I would guarantee the return of this ring to Lauren’s finger! I didn’t know how long it would take, but I told her that I would find the piece of gold jewelry and it would stay within the family storyline for years to come! Janice was extremely encouraged by my words. We scheduled a time for me to come out sometime later that evening and I looked forward to solving the mystery as to where Lauren’s elite private school class ring ended up.

Later that evening, I finished up with a previous client in Northern Virginia and I traveled towards Baltimore where the search site was located. I had no idea that I would be conducting the recovery operation at not only a very historical site, but also a very nostalgic one for me, as well. Let me explain. It turned out that the mansion and the land which it sat upon was owned by a very famous quarryman owner with the last name of Scott. He not only built the mansion back in the late 1700’s, but in addition to that, in the 1800’s, Scott provided the famous stones that were used to build the first Washington Monument located in Baltimore, Maryland, as well as the same marble that was used to build Washington DC’s famous Washington Monument! Upon arriving at the estate, I also learned that the mansion had been previously owned by none other than Dorothy Hamill, the famous figure skater just seven years prior. This was the sentimental part of my search because I grew up watching Dorothy Hamill on television and in person when I was taken by my parents several times in the 1970’s to an ice-skating event called The Ice Capades. I thought it was so cool that I was searching for a missing ring on the very grounds where Dorothy and her family took their walks, enjoyed picnics and entertained guests over the years at this particular historical mansion.

(At the end of this story, I provided additional historical information regarding Scott’s Quarry and the two famous monuments that were constructed in honor of our first president of the United States.)

I will never forget how beautiful my surroundings were as I drove to the mansion. There were horse farms on every side of the country road. As I drove down the very long private lane, it opened up to a marvelous circular drive where the mansion sat, along with a lovely guest house located on the opposite side of the front property. The lawn was exquisite and the trees and streams that surrounded this perfectly painted creation of God simply took my breath away.

As soon as I parked alongside the house, I was greeted by Janice and her husband. At some point Lauren also came out to greet me and it was there that I was guided towards the back yard where I would be shown the vast acreage where they believed the class ring fell out of Lauren’s sister’s pocket. The family was quite kind to me and was very grateful that I could come to help them recover Lauren’s beloved class ring at such short notice. As we made our way from the back stone patio, down the hill to where the picnic table was located at the edge of the field, I was given more details about what took place the night before. Because the family had been looking all over the estate grounds, they explained to me that the picnic table had been moved from its original spot. I would remember this piece of information later on when I returned from the car with all of my metal detecting gear. Janice and Lauren walked took me across the field and guided me to all of the different places where the sisters walked, jogged and played around during that evening when the ring came out of the pocket.

Posing with Scott’s Mansion / Dorothy Hamill’s Former Home!

The scenery behind the house was absolutely exquisite. The most beautiful stream meandered around the 25 acres or so, approximately 75 yards away from the historical mansion’s rear hillside. I will never forget the stillness of the evening and the peace that I felt as I strolled across the grass with the two ladies. If there was any place on earth that I could choose to search for a lost item, this was the perfect environment! As I was walking around, occasionally I would glance up at the mansion at the top of the hill and thought to myself how cool it was that I was searching for a lost item where one of my favorite childhood celebrities once resided. Dorothy Hamill’s amazing ice skating abilities would simply take my breath away as she so beautifully danced about the ice arena during shows and competitions! She was definitely my all-time favorite figure skater!

Once I got all of the facts as to the many possibilities as to where Lauren’s sister may have dropped the ring, I returned to the car and gathered up all of my metal detecting gear. Because there was a lot of territory to conquer, I prepared myself that this could end up being a very long search. Nightfall was just starting to set in, so I made sure that I had all of the necessary night gear available at my fingertips. This included: my Minelab Equinox 800 detector, a high lumens headlamp, headphones, gloves, handheld pinpointer (small detector) and my detector harness vest.

The moment that I arrived back down at the search site, I immediately set up my detector to be able to locate the yellow gold ring that I was searching after. I am extremely experienced at finding lost class rings so I knew exactly how to adjust the settings for Lauren’s piece of jewelry. I utilized a large 15 inch coil (the large loop that is connected to the bottom of the detector shaft) which allowed me to cover a much larger area to detect in a much shorter period of time.

The first area that I searched was all around the picnic table. Once I made sure that there was no sign of the ring, I moved the table to a different place to detect the grass where it had been originally positioned. I covered the area a couple of more times just to make sure that the keepsake wasn’t lost close to the vicinity of where everybody was sitting the night before. It was definitely clear of the ring within a 25 to 30 foot radius around the table.

A Portion of the Field Where I Was Metal Detecting (The Stream was Located Behind the Tree Line)

The next few sections that I wanted to detect were located closer to the stream. The girls had made their way from the picnic table over towards the water on a diagonal path.  Therefore, I wanted to check the spots where they were hanging out before I started gridding across the field. When nothing turned up in those areas near the stream, I knew that it was time for me to start detecting from the picnic table over to the water on that diagonal course where they had walked. No one was quite sure exactly where Lauren and her sister had moved across the field, but they were certain that it was at a particular angle which took them towards the water. I started to make my gridlines across the field at that particular angle and then I returned the other way with a second grid line to see if maybe the ring came out of Lauren’s sister’s pocket when they walked from the table over towards the water.

I swung the metal detector coil back and forth as I moved across the field and then back again towards the picnic table. I carefully made sure that I didn’t miss a single potential target that could end up being Lauren’s gold class ring. It was probably 45 minutes or so into the search when I hit a particular signal on my second grid line moving towards the picnic table from the water’s edge. I believe I was approximately 40 feet away from where the picnic table originally was situated. Though I had detected a good amount of area around the picnic table, this particular target was just outside of the zone where I had been searching prior to starting the gridlines. With my headlamp blazing above me, I knelt down to the grass and pulled out my handheld metal detector to check the specific area where my Equinox 800 was picking up the target signal. At first, it appeared that the piece of metal that I had detected was somewhere below the dirt because I didn’t see anything other than the many blades of grass ascending from the earth.

My First Glance at Lauren’s Brilliant Gold Class Ring!

Until I was completely sure that this particular metal was below ground, I kept moving my pinpointer around that vicinity just to confirm that this was not the target that I was looking for. All of a sudden, to my greatest surprise, I saw a reflection of light that was bouncing off something that resembled a small piece of gold. My fingers moved through the blades of grass until I uncovered the very special treasure that I had been hoping to find for young Lauren! There it was peeking out from the jungle of green! It was Lauren’s high school class ring! Indeed, it was a very beautiful piece of jewelry! It was constructed with a 14 karat yellow gold band accompanied by a blue stone with Lauren’s private school crest engraved in the middle of the ring. I had solved the mystery as to where the ring had fallen out of Lauren’s sister’s pocket! I was beyond thrilled at what I had discovered and how quickly I found the keepsake in an area with so many acres of land that I potentially would have had to detect! It could have taken hours upon hours to find something this small. Yet, my methodical work paid off as I eliminated section by section, grid line by grid line until I eventually hit gold! Yes, I certainly did! I was so very happy to discover this gorgeous piece of precious metal!

After I marked the spot as to where the ring was found, I was hoping to surprise Lauren and her family with the wonderful discovery. However, Lauren’s father had coincidentally been looking through the house window as I was kneeling down in the grass while investigating my gold target signal. He thought to himself that perhaps I may have found what we were all looking for. So he started walking out of the rear door of the mansion as I approached the top of the hill. He asked me with an excited tone of voice, “Did you find it?” I then raised my hand in the air with the gold ring clutched between my fingers to show the gentleman my proud find of the evening! His face lit up with the most satisfied smile and proceeded to congratulate me on finding such a needle in a haystack! He was almost in complete disbelief that I was able to pull this ring from such a large territory! Within seconds, Lauren and her mother made their way across the stone patio to find out if perhaps all the excitement that we were experiencing had something to do with finding Lauren’s ring. They were happily surprised to see the class ring in my hand! Lauren was beyond thrilled to experience such a very special reunion with the ring that she cherished so very much! It was one class ring reunion that I will not easily forget! She was so taken back that I was able to find this extremely beautiful piece of craftsmanship that represented such an important accomplishment in Lauren’s life! Janice was equally excited and quite impressed that I was able to find the ring so quickly with so many acres of land out there to search!

Dorothy Hamill at Her Finest!

It was there that night, on that famous ice skater’s formally owned estate that the four of us celebrated our own special victory with the successful search and recovery of Lauren’s gold high school class ring! It was absolutely thrilling for me to be invited onto such a lovely estate to help this dear family find something so important as Lauren’s beloved keepsake!

Hamill was the Most Famous Skater During the 1970’s

Not only was it a very nostalgic time for me, knowing that Dorothy Hamill once lived on the property where I had conducted my search, but it was equally exciting to know that two of our most prominent monuments honoring our first president, George Washington, were constructed with the rock that was pulled from this very propert nearly two centuries ago!

 

Now, every time I pass the Washington Monument in our nation’s capital of Washington DC, I always think to myself how special it was to have found a lost ring on the same land where most of those blocks of marble were originally dug up from Scott’s quarry so many years earlier! And to think that this mansion was built and dwelled within by Mr. Scott himself dating all the way back to the late 1700s! It was truly a very special ring recovery adventure, filled with several sentimental and historical significances! I will never forget that magical night at Scott’s mansion in Cockeysville, Maryland! Never will I forget it!

More History About Scott’s Quarry

As shared above, Scott’s Quarry’s marble was used to build the very first monument (located in Baltimore, Maryland) honoring the life and legacy of America’s first president, George Washington.

Scott’s Quarry Historic Marker

Designed by architect Robert Mills and erected between 1815 and 1829, this was the first public monument erected to George Washington. The construction contract specified “the whole of the column is to be of the whitest and the best quality marble from Scott’s Quarry.”

Another great piece of construction honoring our great American leader is The Washington Monument in our nation’s capital. It too was made from the same marble limestone that Baltimore’s Washington Monument was made out of. It towers above the city that bears Washington’s name, serving as an awe-inspiring reminder of George Washington’s greatness. The monument, like the man, stands in no one’s shadow.

The Washington Monument, designed by Robert Mills and eventually completed by Thomas Casey and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, honors and memorializes George Washington at the center of the nation’s capital. The structure was completed in two phases of construction: Phase 1: (1848-1854) and Phase 2: (1876-1884). Built in the shape of an Egyptian obelisk, evoking the timelessness of ancient civilizations, the Washington Monument embodies the awe, respect, and gratitude the nation felt for its most essential Founding Father. When completed, the Washington Monument was the tallest building in the world at 555 feet, 5-1/8 inches.

The First Washington Monument in Baltimore, Maryland

In the beginning, the original idea for Washington’s statue was to have our first president sitting on a horse. Washington liked the concept. However, ultimately others didn’t favor the design when it came to deciding on the equestrian look. Then, in 1836, 37 years after Washington’s death, architect Robert Mills, who also designed Baltimore’s monument to Washington, came up with a new design for an obelisk (a pencil like structure) that appealed to planners. “It was modern in its concept,” said Baltimore County historian John McGrain. “It’s a very sleek, straightforward kind of design.”

Americans were urged to contribute $1.00 each for the stately structure. The cornerstone was laid in 1848, but construction was stopped as funding dried up and the Civil War was on the horizon. Work resumed and was completed in 1884, giving the monument two different shades of marble. According to park service research, the marble for the bottom section came from what is now Redland Genstar in Texas, Maryland near Interstate Route 83 outside the city of Baltimore, Maryland. The top 300 to 400 feet of the amazing 555 foot tall structure came from Scott’s Quarry in Cockeysville, Maryland only 18 minutes from Texas, Maryland.

In the early years of the marble business in the 1840s, the rock, dug from a string of canyonlike pits in the area, was used for such notable buildings as the Capitol in Washington, Baltimore’s City Hall and the Baltimore County Courthouse. Many of the city’s well-known white marble steps also came from the quarry. “They say this is the stone that built Baltimore,” Gease said.

In those days, marble was extracted tediously by hand, mostly by Irish immigrants who had fled their famine-stricken country for the $1.00 to $1.50-a-day wages at a quarry. The laborers chiseled the stone from beds that were formed millions of years ago as masses of mucky sediment were squeezed, melted and recrystallized. The cut marble slabs were heaved into carts and rolled about a half-mile to the Cockeysville railroad station for delivery to such destinations as Washington DC.

The Second Washington Monument in Washington DC

In 1998, during the more recent Washington Monument restoration project, fresh blocks of Scott’s Quarry limestone was discovered to replace old broken pieces from the weathered historical structure. This time, in the modern age, the stone was transported to DC in a more simpler fashion. A flatbed truck carried the designated marble to the Nation’s Capital where it was reunited with its 150 year old counterpart that originally helped to make up the world’s tallest free-standing masonry structure.

If you would like to view the SEARCH VIDEO and the fantastic RING REVEAL pertaining to this search, please subscribe to my YouTube channel and you will be notified when the search video is uploaded onto YouTube.

SUBSCRIBE TO BRIAN’S YOUTUBE CHANNEL TO VIEW THIS SEARCH VIDEO!

If you would like to watch the SEARCH VIDEO and the RING REVEAL pertaining to this story, the video will be uploaded soon. To receive a NOTIFICATION letting you know when the video is uploaded to YOUTUBE: go to YOUTUBE by CLICKING THE LINK BELOW or OPEN your YOUTUBE APP on your device. In the SEARCH BAR, type: THE RING RETURNER, click SUBSCRIBE and lastly, CLICK ON THE “BELL” to receive NOTIFICATIONS when this latest search video is available to view! 

BRIAN’S YOUTUBE CHANNEL LINK: 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmcn09QqWhHrj-7SGqlUBJQ

CALL BRIAN RUDOLPH WITH THE RING FINDERS AT (301) 466-8644!

VISIT THE RING FINDER’S WEBSITE TO READ MORE OF BRIAN’S SUCCESSFUL SEARCH STORIES at:

https://theringfinders.com/Brian.Rudolph/

HE WILL RETURN TO YOU WHAT HAS BEEN LOST!

VISIT BRIAN’S LOCAL WEBSITE FOR ADDITIONAL STORIES AND INFORMATION AT: www.theringreturner.com

 

Two lost rings found in New Brighton, MN

  • from Twin Cities Metro (Minnesota, United States)

Jason Roberge, an experienced ring finder, received a call from Jamie who was in Minnesota for a work convention. She and some co-workers were outside participating in some team-building activities in a field near the meeting site. She had removed her precious rings before the event and placed them in a pocket. But, she later realized that the rings had slipped out of her pocket. Unfortunately, she had already flown back home and had no way of searching for herself.

Jamie contacted Jason, and he was happy to help look for the lost  rings. Most of the snow had melted from the day before, and Jason was able to find both lost rings rather quickly. The rings were shipped back to Jamie, and she was overly relieved and happy to have them back!

 

If you lost a ring in Minnesota and need help finding it, call Jason Roberge at The Ring Finders.

 

LOST PLATINUM WEDDING BAND BUILDING A SNOWMAN in Brampton, ON 🇨🇦

  • from Brampton (Ontario, Canada)

Young couple was building a snowman ⛄️ in a school sports field yesterday and the young man took his gloves off at one point. He then realized after a while he lost his platinum wedding band in the snow. They purchased a metal detector but had no luck. They reached out to me late last night and I made arrangement to meet them at the area very early this morning with all respecting COVID-19
!!

I started off by circular gridding the snowman. Then at one point I continued in a half moon grid as it was evident I wasn’t required to check down the slop. A half pass later, I heard the double tone with a 16 number on the Minelab Equinox 800! I cleared the snow away and saw the round ring shape in a portion of the snow I had just moved.

I then asked to do a video for the blog for good luck ….and here’s what happened!! Video link below

Another #PAYITFORWARD donation coming into the Kelly Shires Breast Cancer Foundation! In turn the clients receive a tax receipt for their donation!!

Thank you Aman & Harman for calling upon my services!! I love using my detecting skills/passion to help other on lost sentimental/valuable items!!

  

 

Lost wedding ring in the grass, Windermere, Florida….Found and Returned to owner!

  • from Sanford (Florida, United States)
Contact:


Mike McInroe…Metal Detector Specialist…Call ASAP, Anytime…321-363-6029

Andrew was playing ball with his son out on one of the grassy areas in his neighborhood when all of a sudden he felt his wedding ring go flying off of his finger. He immediately stopped and began to search the grass, thinking “How hard can it be to find a white gold ring laying on the grass?”. Soon he had a bunch of kids and a few adults involved in the search and it seemed like his ring just plain disappeared. And much to Andrew’s dismay it soon got dark and they had to give up the search.

That evening Andrew and his wife went on line to look for help and came across theringfinders.com and that gave them some hope! Just knowing that there are actually people “out there” that help people find their lost rings and valuables was a huge encouragement—so Andrew gave me a call.

We arranged to meet early the next morning and as we walked to the grassy area where Andrew lost his ring he explained how he was spinning the ball with two hands and that motion was what caused his ring to go flying. As they showed me where the loss occurred I put out four flags and began to carefully grid search the area with my ATMax metal detector. Knowing that his ring was a medium white gold band I was concentrating on anything showing numbers from large foil in the 30s to the 50s! Numerous targets were scattered here and there, most of them too deep to to be Andrew’s lost wedding ring. A recent ring loss will be a surface target that will sound crisp and clean and register shallow on the depth reading. Thankfully only 8 minutes later, our prayers were answered as the perfect signal sounded off in my headphones and there, barely visible in the grass, was Andrew’s lost wedding ring! I motioned for Andrew and his wife to come over and see what I had found! Lots of smiles and thank you’s were exchanged and a huge relief was obviously taken off of Andrew’s heart and mind.

Lost something recently? Give me a call, text or email ASAP!
Mike McInroe…thankful to be a member of theringfinders.com

Lost Ring Found in Bloomington Minnesota

  • from Twin Cities Metro (Minnesota, United States)

Garrett was working on installing some de-icing equipment on his roof when he shook his hand and felt his ring fly off his hand. “I could hear it bounce off the roof and hit the ground below, said Garrett, a resident of Bloomington, MN. He frantically searched the immediate area below. He even cut down a large shrub to better his efforts. Furthermore, after borrowing a metal detector from a friend, he was unsuccessful in finding the lost ring.

He contacted The Ring Finders, and Jason Roberge agreed to come out and help him with his search. Roberge was quickly able to find the ring in the snow and leaves below, and Garrett was thrilled to get his ring back. Garrett commented, “I spent the majority of the afternoon talking about how efficient and fast you were with locating the ring.”

If you have lost something valuable and you are located in Minnesota’s twin cities metro area, contact Ring Finder Jason Roberge to help you find your lost ring!

Lost ring found at Independence Park in Canton, Michigan

  • from Wixom (Michigan, United States)

Travis called me with the classic needle and the haystack problem.  He lost his platinum wedding ring while coaching his daughter’s soccer team the evening before.  He had already looked hard for it and welcomed my help.  Travis borrowed a very neat, army surplus, mine detector which was fairly powerful, and because the field was fairly clean, he would have probably found the ring himself, given a few more hours of diligent searching.  Fortunately, I was able to find his ring in front of the goal ending our search in about thirty minutes.

I made a short YouTube video of the recovery and the happy reunion.  https://youtu.be/Js1_LuKRhXc

This ring was hard to see in the grass.

A little dirty but unharmed.

Diamond and Gold Ring Returned TRF Celina, Ohio

  • from Celina (Ohio, United States)

This time of year in Ohio as the seasons change and the leaves start to turn, people are doing last minute tree trimming, yard work and clearing of brush. Sometimes with the cooler temperatures the rings fit a little looser.

 
This was the case with a gentleman from Allen County. He contacted me Saturday night (10/17/20) to tell me that while he was cutting some limbs out of some pine trees and pulling saplings the night before,he and a friend were feeling rushed as darkness approached. Apparently with the cooler temperatures his ring had slipped off. They looked for it for a short time and the gentleman returned the next day with two friends to continue the search. By that point the yard had been mowed and even with the freshly cut grass they could not find the ring .  after dropping another ring in the grass to see if he could find that ring he noticed how quickly it was covered. He quickly picked the second ring back up but this also concerned him. If the grass is hiding the ring how do I find it?  He and his friends checked the limbs that they had cut out of the pine tree as well as the brush they had picked up before cutting it down into smaller pieces and putting it in a dumpster. They then headed back to the respective homes while the gentleman reviewed his possible options.  Do I give up on the ring?… Do I try to purchase a metal detector and see if I can find it myself?  He started to check Google and that’s when he ran across me on TheRingfinders.com which is also about the same time his friend contacted him with the same information. He grabbed his phone and gave me a call to see if I could possibly help him with his dilemma.

Hunting was tough in the area but we still got it done.

When I answered the phone he had explained to me what the situation was, what had happened and what he had lost. Normally, he removes his rings when he does this sort of work but he did not on this occasion and was not very happy with himself that such a thing had been allowed to happen. He mentioned that he was a big believer in karma and thought that since he as well as his friend had found my information at basically the same time that it was karma telling him to give me a try.
 
After many questions for him about the area it was lost in, the conditions it was lost under, what the ring looked like including the composition of the Ring and any other identifying marks I told him I thought I could help. He was of course very happy to hear this. He was very accommodating to make his schedule meet up with mine and we made plans to meet up the next afternoon at a restaurant in his area to follow him to the location where the ring had been lost.
 
My wife and I made the trip the next afternoon to meet up with the gentleman who was an absolute pleasure to meet. He had been very thoughtful in writing down directions to the location even though we were going to follow him just in case we got lost. He had even called me when we were on our way to let us know it was raining in the area we were traveling to period he was concerned that that may affect my equipment and if we needed to we could back it up an hour or so for the rain to pass. I had told him we were on the road and would see him soon. The rain was no worry since I was bringing a waterproof machine.

Hunting was tough in the area but we still got it done.

After meeting at the restaurant and following him to the location where the ring was lost I had him explain the conditions again in which the ring was lost under and show me the area that he believed it to be in.  As I grabbed my detector I dumped my pouch into a bucket to show him there was nothing in the pouch. I have recently begun doing this as much for my protection as the person I am searching for their lost item. After showing the pouch was empty I told him that once I was done I would again empty the pouch so that he could see anything that was in it.
Turning on the detector I headed for the trees. I felt I should clear that area first and then start covering the grass between the trees and the pavement where they had been working. Just a few short feet into the trees the brush became fairly thick. I explained to him I was going to remove any surface signals that may mask the item. Next thing you know the brush is thick enough I am on my hands and knees and a detector is almost useless at this point. I’m crawling around on twigs, pine needles and pine cones picking up surface trash and other metal targets on the surface with a pin pointer to clear the area. I found many trash targets as well as some glass bottles. I also found a Lincoln penny while crawling around on the ground . Then I got a signal and brushed the pine cones out of the way and saw the bottom of a gold band. I knew right away this must be the ring . As I rolled it over in my hand to see the stone there was no doubt it was the item I was looking for. The item I had been looking for was a gold band with a 1.25 to 1.5 carat diamond.
 
After about 30 minutes, my pouch was full. I started out of the trees to try and get rid of some of the trash. I handed him two bottles that he promptly took over to the dumpster to dispose of while I started dumping my pouch into the bucket. Showing him all the trash that had been found he walked over to his truck to get a trash bag to put it in to properly dispose of it. When he returned from his truck I held out my hand to show him the Lincoln penny that I had found in the trees. He glanced at it and said that it was just a penny and I could keep it if I wanted. I told him I had ran across the penny and stuck it in my pocket because that’s not what I was there to find. I was there to find a ring
  He agreed that yes, he was hoping I could return his ring to him. I sat the penny down on the back of the truck and as he started to pick up the trash again, I mentioned to him that I had also found this laying on the ground in the trees and held out my hand to present him with his lost ring. He was both very surprised and very happy! He then asked me if he could possibly have the penny that I had showed him due to the fact that it could be a Good luck Penny, since I found his ring right after that . I of course promptly complied and told him with a smile yes! You can have the penny as well.
I asked him to tell me a bit about the ring, if he would. He mentioned that he had bought the diamond around 40 years ago and shortly after that bought the setting and band for it. He had managed to keep it all these years until that cool October Friday night and less than 48 hours after being lost we were able to return it promptly back to its rightful owner.
I can understand why he was hoping to get his ring returned. It is definitely a very nice looking ring and one to be proud of for a return . As a side note, due to the situation that we are in currently with Covid-19 even though the picture does not show it due to the masks we were both smiling and very happy in this picture. I was happy to be a part of this great return and the gentleman was certainly very thankful and happy to have his ring back in such a short amount of time.

A happy return. (10/18/20)

Covid-19 couldn’t kill this great return!  Good people do good things to help others… Karma does shine through!
After getting some photos we said our goodbyes and wished each other the best. Once I got home I received this message from him.

Read the rest of this entry »

Wedding Band Lost During Car Crash Rescue in Big Pool, Maryland…Found on Cliff

  • from Washington (District of Columbia, United States)

Ross’s Handsome Wedding Band that was Once Worn by His Beloved Father Many Years Earlier

Ross, Hannah and their Newborn Child Celebrate the Return of their Cherished Family’s Heirloom

BRIAN RUDOLPH, LOST ITEM RECOVERY SPECIALIST (LAND, WATER, SAND, HOUSES & VEHICLES) WILL FIND YOUR LOST KEEPSAKE! CALL ASAP (301) 466-8644!

Who doesn’t like to experience a great adventure? Being a member of THE RING FINDERS takes me to exciting places with fascinating stories attached to the searches that I embark upon. This story has all of those twists and turns that define such an adventure!

On September 6, 2019, a terrible car accident took place in the Maryland city of Big Pool. Reporter Tamela Baker of Herald-Mail Media reported the story as follows:

“I-70 Crash Sends One to Hospital

The Destroyed Vehicle Being Lifted from the Dangerous Ravine Below

BIG POOL — A single-vehicle crash Friday that closed both westbound lanes of Interstate 70 at mile marker 9 near Big Pool, sent one person to the hospital, according to Maryland State Police.

A spokesman for the Hagerstown barrack said the vehicle, a 2019 Chrysler Pacifica, was traveling westbound when it struck median guardrails on both sides of the road and went over an embankment.

The driver was transported to Meritus Medical Center near Hagerstown, police said. Two dogs that were in the vehicle were transported to a shelter.
The accident occurred at 3:26 p.m.; lanes were reopened at about 6:30 p.m..”

In addition to this basic news report, the man that was critically injured in the accident permanently lost the use of one arm (there is some speculation that the arm, sadly, had to be amputated).

When something as horrific as this particular tragedy happens, nobody is thinking that there could possibly be a sub-story attached to what was already a near fatal situation with this particular driver. The news reporters never got wind of the rest of the story that you are about to read.

I received an email from a young lady named Hannah whose husband named Ross is an officer in the United States Marine Corps stationed at Quantico Base in Virginia. The couple were on their way to attend a wedding in Indiana. Just as they were driving through Big Pool, Maryland, the accident which I described above had just taken place. Ross, being trained to act on instinct in emergency situations, jumped out of his vehicle and ran to the site of the endangered passenger whose vehicle was leaning on edge over a cliff. The car was resting between a tree and a large rock and nothing else. If the driver were to have climbed out of the vehicle, he, his two dogs and whatever else that was left of the demolished car would have plummeted down a thousand or more feet into the ravine that was filled with rocks and water below.

The driver of the vehicle was severely injured due to his car spinning out of control, hitting the guardrail on the left side of the highway and then ricocheting over to the far right guardrail which was located just feet from a bridge. The vehicle happened to break through the guardrail and fell approximately 50 feet down the very steep cliff. Parts of the driver’s body were crushed in the wreckage. Miraculously, the two canines survived with minor scratches. No reason was publicly reported as to why the man’s car spun out of control which caused such a devastating accident. It remains a mystery to this day.

Ross leapt over the mangled guardrail and rushed down the precipice to the aid of the poor man who was virtually moments away from losing his life. Had the distressed man not listened to the instructions of the “Good Samaritan”, he easily would have caused the vehicle to move from its position and crash at the bottom of the ravine. Without realizing how steep the rock face was, the moment that Ross got to the other side of the guardrail, he ended up sliding down the cliff, off to the side and further below where the vehicle came to rest. He slid down maybe about 35 feet or so, attempting to grab ahold of whatever he could to stop the fall. Eventually, Ross was able to hold onto the trunk of a very small tree which happened to be near where he had faltered. Once he found whatever else he could grab onto in order to support his weight, the Marine pushed himself back up the ridge to reach the greatly injured man who was trapped in the car.

Knowing how dangerous it was for the driver to attempt to get out of the vehicle, the Marine gave specific instructions to the man to stay calm and to remain inside the car until emergency crews arrived. The brave soldier made his way over to where the car was leaning so vulnerably off the escarpment and continued to restate what he told the man to do when the driver attempted to escape from the front passenger window. The territory where the car came to rest was so dangerous, that if Ross moved slightly to one side or the other, he himself could have fallen down into the ravine. There was no way anybody would survive a fall like that at that height.

The man listened to Ross by returning to his seat where he waited for emergency personnel and paramedics to arrive. As indicated above, for the next several hours, all traffic was stopped in each direction for miles and miles. In a matter of minutes, the focus would be on the first responders’ efforts in freeing the poor man and his two pets from the horrible wreckage.

Once the crews took over at the crash site, Ross continued to assist the emergency personnel in every way possible until his heroic actions had come to fruition – all three of the passengers were cut out of the vehicle and brought up to safety! Now that the rescue operation was near over, he and a few others were helped up the side of the crag and the Marine eventually walked back to his vehicle to reunite with his wife. It was an extremely emotional and physical experience for Ross who was there just at the right time to help save a man from certain death. The highway was reopened and the couple resumed their travels to Indiana.

After an hour of driving passed the accident in Big Pool, Maryland, Ross noticed that his yellow 14 karat gold wedding band was no longer on his finger. The utter shock of the disappearance of his ring caused him to reassess where he was the last time he saw the ring, and he was certain that he wore it out of the house earlier that day. He retraced all of his steps as to where he was after he left the house with his wife and the only place that he felt that the ring could have come off was at the crash site when he went to help the distressed crash victim. With no hesitation, they decided to turn their vehicle around and travel another hour back to Big Pool, Maryland in search of Ross’s lost gold wedding band.

When Ross and Hannah arrived back at the bridge, the Marine, who so valiantly helped with the rescue earlier, received special permission to search the area where he lost his balance when he stumbled down the cliff. Unfortunately, he was not able to locate the wedding band anywhere. He was quite limited in his search locations because the bluff was way too steep to be moving around without proper climbing gear. At some point he gave up and headed back to his car empty handed.

The man was pretty down about losing the ring. So much so that the couple canceled their plans to attend the wedding and instead, drove two more hours back to Quantico Base in Virginia to search their house just in case Ross had been mistaken about remembering that he put the ring on before leaving on their trip. Sadly, the cherished wedding band was not to be found anywhere in the house. The couple concluded with little doubt that the ring had most likely come off during the rescue operation. In the days that followed the disappearance of Ross’s ring, the couple would contact various emergency departments and the towing company to see if his ring had been found by anybody. Nothing was turned in.

Anyone’s wedding band is special enough to do whatever possible to recover such a sentimental and meaningful piece of jewelry. However, there are some family heirlooms that have even deeper meanings and hold more emotional weight than just the average wedding ring. Let me explain. Ross’s yellow gold wedding band had previously belonged to his father who sadly passed away when Ross was only 18 years old. The family decided that he should be the recipient of the special keepsake that had been worn on his father’s finger since the day his dad had gotten married back in 1983. The date of Ross’s father’s wedding was inscribed inside the band and when Ross got married a few years ago, his wedding date was inscribed next to his father’s date. This was one of the most important possessions that Ross had in his life. In addition to that, the significance of the band was even more elevated because it was the very ring that Ross’s bride placed upon his finger on their beloved wedding day, as well.

Because of the great determination within Ross to recover his lost wedding band, the Marine went to a local outdoor sporting shop and purchased repelling equipment in order for him to safely work his way down the cliff and search for the missing ring. Ross also acquired a metal detector to scan the area where he thought the band came off. Nothing was going to stop this man from recovering what was so precious to him. The couple drove two hours back to Big Pool where Ross descended down the rock face and did some metal detecting to see if the ring would appear. There was constant beeping of signals coming from the machine, and at times it was really hard to make sense of any of it. It appeared that metal was coming from everywhere, according to what Hannah conveyed to me. Sadly, he could not find the jewel.

Ross Rappelling Down the Cliff to Seek Out His Cherished Missing Wedding Band

After a few hours of searching, the couple had to return home. Yet, this would not be the last trip that Ross would make back to the crash site. Again, he and his wife returned a couple of more times in search of the ring that was once worn by his late father. Regretfully, the ghostly site of where a man’s life literally hung in the balance would still not give up the gold that Ross was in search of all that time.

The clock hands continued to move along and so did Ross with his new assignment in Kuwait where he would live for the next 7 months. He had pretty much resolved that his precious wedding band was non-recoverable. Even if he wanted to try again to find the ring at the crash site, there was no way he could even consider returning to Big Pool for a long time because he was about to board a military plane bound for the Middle East.

In my experience, there are some situations in life that are just meant to work out. Even though everything up to this point was full of disappointment and despair, the story was not going to end with all of Ross’s failed attempts in recovering his beloved keepsake. After 2 months had passed since Ross lost the ring, Hannah received a phone call in mid November from her mother in Indiana.  She shared with her daughter that Hannah’s brother stumbled upon an article regarding a directory of metal detectorists called THE RING FINDERS. The article that he read had to do with a lost ring that was recovered by a member of THE RING FINDERS somewhere on a summer camp property in Indiana. Her family thought that this could be the answer that the couple was looking for in order to recover Ross’s ring. Hannah got excited and searched for a member of THE RING FINDERS who provided metal detecting services in Maryland. That’s when my name, Brian Rudolph, popped up. Hannah then proceeded to send an email to me sharing the background of the story and requesting my services. This is what she typed.

“Good morning Brian, my name is Hannah and I was wondering if you travel to Big Pool, Maryland. My husband and I were traveling from Virginia to Indiana for a wedding when we saw a hole in the guardrail heading down to Lick Run River. A man had swerved off the road and flew down the riverbank where his car was wedged in between a rock and a tree on its side with the passenger side facing up. Other people who were beginning to stop were just standing on the bridge yelling at him to stay in the car. He had a big gash on his head and was clearly confused. He was still trying to climb out of the passenger’s side window and he would have fallen a lot farther down to the river and rocks below if he had gotten out. My husband is an officer in the United States Marine Corps and he quickly without hesitation, slid down to the man so he could get a closer talk with him and keep him calm. He stayed down there for 20 minutes until emergency services arrived. He came back up, we got back in the car, and got back on the road. About an hour later he realized his ring was gone. This ring was his father’s who he lost when he was 18 and it means the world to him. We immediately turned around and went back. Thankfully, the emergency crew allowed him to go down and look but not for very long, and he was unable to find it. He went back the next three days with repelling gear for stability and a metal detector, and still nothing. This was a month or so ago and I wish I would have contacted you sooner, but I had no idea the services even existed. They pulled the car straight up and out so it did not go over where my husband was standing or where the ring could be. I also reached out to all responding stations and no one out on the calls saw it or picked it up. We are 100% certain it is out there and I would love to surprise my husband with his father’s ring when he gets home from deployment in May. I know this is a crazy story and you probably don’t look on the side of cliff’s and on the side of the highway. But if you could just please take a look at the pictures that I have attached and consider trying to find this ring, it would mean the world to my husband and myself. My phone number is… Thank you so much for your consideration. Hannah”

After reviewing the photos that Hannah sent me that were attached to her email requesting my help, I immediately called the young lady on the phone and we had a long discussion covering every detail in order for me to determine if I was in a position to help this couple. I loved the story of how this brave Marine was trying to save another man’s life and in the process he ended up losing his ring. That wedding band meant the world to him and I wanted to get it back! Though this looked like a very complicated scenario, I was quite intrigued by the elements of this drama and I couldn’t be more excited to attempt a recovery effort. I told Hannah I would take on the challenge and see what I could do to get Ross’s ring back on his finger upon his return home from Kuwait. She was thrilled that I was willing to take this project on! My next step was to request any additional photographs and information that Hannah had not already provided in order to help in my recovery efforts.

Hannah sent over several more photos that she had taken at the crash site, as well as pictures of Ross after he repelled down to the first possible location where he thought the ring could have ended up. Then, we regrouped on the phone and the helpful young lady described each of the images so that I had a better idea of where Ross had been searching based on where he remembered losing his footing. I recall spending a very long time analyzing and re-examining the photos, calling Hannah back up again and asking her more questions for clarity. Then, I would go back to the photos to study them again and again as if I was actually right there at the search site.

It was clear from the angle of the cliff that I would definitely need to bring climbing gear to safely repel down to the areas where I needed to metal detect. There wasn’t just one location to check out, but there were several possible spots that I needed to spend time investigating and this could take quite a bit of time down along the precipice. This meant that I needed to be safely secured by more than one climbing line for a good period of time while doing my extensive search. The fact that Ross did not find the ring after multiple attempts (even though he was not an experienced metal detectorist) told me that this was not going to be an easy and obvious discovery. Yet, I couldn’t wait to take on the challenge! So much so that when I sent over some paperwork for Hannah to fill out, I ended my email with these words:

I look forward to getting the ring back to Ross!

I told Hannah to give me five days to prepare for my first search attempt at the crash site and then I would start metal detecting the area. I couldn’t wait!

Search Day 1

In the days leading up to this first trip to Big Pool, Maryland, I gathered up all the necessary gear that I would need to repel down the cliff in order to give myself the best opportunity to clear out a lot of area with my metal detector. I prepared my backpacks full of various climbing ropes, all the necessary repelling gear, safety helmet, gloves, metal detecting machines, tools and accessories. I figured that as soon as I made it to the side of the cliff, I didn’t want to have to keep going back to the car to get any gear or perhaps forget to bring necessary items from home. On the contrary, I wanted to remain in the search location as long as possible without any delays. I can’t tell you how many hours of preparation went into making sure that I didn’t allow any room for mistakes. My first trip to the search site was designed to get settled and familiar with my surroundings along with searching as much territory as I could. However, I really did not want to rush any steps that were necessary to take prior to picking up the metal detector on the side of that ridge. My safety was the most important preoccupation. Then, second to that, studying the scenery and looking at the photos on my phone to get a clear picture of all of the spots where Ross had moved about. There were a few key areas where the Marine may have lost the ring once he got over to the other side of the broken guardrail, faltering down the crag to where he eventually stopped his fall.

Just before taking off on this wild ring recovery adventure, I texted Hannah and asked her to please stop what she was doing at some point and pray to the Lord and ask for His favor upon me that He would guide me right to the ring! She texted back and shared:

Oh trust me I am! And also the family of the person who was in the crash, they are praying, as well. Both of our families are! You have tons of prayer!

I was really encouraged to hear that all of those people, including Hannah had my back in prayer regarding this difficult task in front of me!

It was sometime in the early afternoon when I finally arrived at the search site. I parked over on the shoulder as far over as possible because of the speeding cars and trucks that were barreling down that highway and across the bridge. I immediately set up traffic cones around my car and pulled out all of my gear to start heading towards the corner of the bridge. The section where the guardrail was ripped apart by the out-of-control car, was now replaced with new steel reinforcement. All over the ground were plenty of left-behind-pieces of the destroyed vehicle that once housed the driver and the two poor canine passengers. It was eerie to say the least.

I will never forget the moment when I looked down the cliff for the first time. It was very clear that there was no way that I was going to make it safely down that decline without proper repelling equipment. I used several ropes for the repelling procedures. I set up one that was tied to the guardrail and a second one that was secured around a tree downhill a bit. I fastened all of my gear upon my back and over my shoulder and then repelled down the cliff about 45 feet or so until my hiking boots were well planted on a concrete slab covered with debris that was probably at a 70° angle. You never felt like you were secure on your feet without having the ropes securely fastened to the climbing harness. It was way too dangerous to search that cliff without being securely fastened to those necessary ropes. The drop below was very scary just looking down into the ravine.

The Treacherous Car Crash Site Where Ross Assisted the Injured Driver

Once I placed all of my gear on a particular spot along the ridge, I began taking pictures all around where I was resting along the rock. I wanted to make sure that I had captured various visual points to reference later on just in case I didn’t find the ring on my first attempt. That way I could study my surroundings and make any additional phone calls to Hannah to ask her any other questions that I may end up having. In comparing Hannah’s photos to my current view of things, it was fascinating how the seasons changed so rapidly in the past 10 weeks or so since Ross and Hannah had searched the rock face. Now, the once green leaves that so youthfully danced upon the branches of the trees above, had already fallen to the ground, aged with endless colors that softly whispered rumors of what tragically took place here at this very spot just a couple of months earlier. So much had changed since Ross’s boots touched down on the side of this cliff in search of the precious wedding band that he once shared with his late father.

Hannah Took this Photo Looking Over the Big Pool, Maryland Bridge Down into the Steep Ravine Below

I was amazed at what I saw at the search site. Vehicle parts and pieces were scattered about everywhere. One moment I would find part of the front grill, and the next minute I would stumble upon the horn. I identified the large rock and tree where the car had been suspended above the terrifying ravine below. I thought to myself how frightening it must have been for that driver to have his vehicle seesawing on one side in such a vulnerable position! It was so high up overlooking endless rocks, boulders and water below. So much drama had taken place at this very spot and the mystery of the missing wedding band was left to be solved! I couldn’t wait to see where all of this would lead to! I was so hoping that somewhere in the midst of all the ghostly remains, there would be a piece of gold waiting for me to recover so I could soon return it to its rightful owner!

As it turned out, the moment that I began metal detecting, I ended up getting a call to assist my wife with an immediate need. Family comes first, so I gathered up all of my gear and climbed back up to the top of the cliff, released the ropes, packed everything up and headed for the car. I left the search site and returned later to continue my efforts.

Then, later that afternoon, after driving all the way back up the mountain to return to the search site for a second visit, setting up my all my gear, repelling down the side of the cliff, once again I was called away for another important matter that I needed to attend to. It was clear that this first search day was not going to involve any metal detecting at all. However, I was very happy to get a good idea of the layout of the environment as shown in the photographs taken at the site two months earlier. In addition, it was helpful for me to initially get comfortable with my surroundings.

I would return the next day, with the hope that I would have a wide range of uninterrupted time in order for me to effectively metal detect the crash site.

Search Day 2

Though I was completely exhausted from all of the driving the day before, I was re-charged and ready to resume my search for Ross’s lost ring. I believe I arrived back in Big Pool sometime around eleven in the morning. I first stopped at one of the truck stops right off of Route 70, which was a couple of exits away from the search site. I fueled up and prepped all of my gear, organizing a couple backpacks full of climbing equipment that I had used from the day before. I wanted to make sure that everything was in place and ready to be utilized when I got back to the cliff. Next, I called Hannah and we had a video conference. I interviewed her and captured the background to the story of the lost wedding band before starting up the car and heading to the bridge. I told Ross’s wife that I would do everything I could to recover the ring.

It was getting much colder as it was approaching the last week of November. The climate up there in the mountains also brought about a chill that would blow through the area where I was working. Hannah was very appreciative of my determination and positive attitude that I was not going to give up until I got that ring back for her beloved Marine. I was not only passionate about wanting to get the ring back for Ross, but I felt like I was doing something for his father, though he was no longer living. I know that this recovery mission would have meant the world to his dad if he knew what had disappeared when his son did such a brave and heroic act in trying to save the life of the driver who was attempting to get out of the vehicle.

Hannah and I ended the video conference call and I headed for the search and recovery site. I went through the same steps as I did the day before: I parked as far over on the shoulder as possible (Frankly, it was not a very safe place to park your car, but it was the best I could do with the location of where the accident had occurred.), placed the emergency cones up around my vehicle, quickly pulled out all of my climbing gear along with the metal detector bag with two detectors inside, video and photography equipment, climbing helmet, gloves, additional cold-weather clothing with balaclava and an extra outer shell where it zips up over my pants and jacket. The last thing I pulled out was the metal detector harness. I believe I was already wearing the repelling harness.

Detecting the Side of the Cliff

Immediately upon getting to where the guard rail had originally been torn up, I fastened my ropes and attached the equipment to my climber’s harness and set myself up to repel down the side of the cliff and return to the original location where I first started to metal detect the day before. Now that I had been to the search site a couple of times, I was very comfortable with my surroundings and I could easily evaluate where I could move about and where not to step. What I mean by this is that there were multiple spots where I thought there was solid ground, but it turned out to be just loose dirt and leaves that covered over very delicate ground. The moment that I placed weight on those areas, my feet would come out from underneath me and I would begin to fall. That’s why the climbing gear was absolutely essential and I would have never been able to conduct this recovery mission without all of the repelling equipment that I brought to the site.

Rappelling Down the Cliff in Search of the Lost Ring

Once I finished throwing a secondary emergency rope around one of the trees and secured the second line to my harness with my Grigri belay device and attached one of two ascension ascenders, I felt comfortable to start moving around various spots and metal detect each hotspot slowly and carefully to see if the ring would turn up. I methodically moved about one section at a time and when I couldn’t find it in one area, I would finish the swings and move to the next possible target location. This was well coordinated because I had reviewed the fantastic photos that Hannah circled and provided for me to use with what she remembered Ross indicated when he had been on his own quest for his missing wedding band.

Heading Back Down the Cliff, Secured by Two Climbing Ropes

Ironically, my biggest obstacle in searching for Ross’s ring wasn’t the dangerous crag that I was hanging on the side of. It actually was the sheets of metal that were hidden under the rock and dirt. Let me explain. Apparently, that whole area where I was looking for the ring was part natural rock formation and part man made construction. The bridge that was beside me was reinforced by the concrete bases on either side of the ravine that secured the weight of the structure and its load. So, much of the old dirt, trees and plants located where I was initially detecting on one side of the crash site were natural to the environment but growing on top of man’s ingenious creations. The other section of the cliff where the vehicle came to rest, was all natural rock and trees.

In sharing all the detail that I just did, my point was to say that metal detecting the area was extremely difficult, frustrating and nearly impossible. In fact, my search time was separated into several sections:

  1. Experimenting and adjusting settings with my detector as I detected a sample of metal rebar. I needed to see if I could get separation between the large metal sheets below and the tiny gold object that might be resting above it. I had no success with my 15 inch coil that I was using on one of my Equinox 800’s at the time.
  2. Sifting by hand through dirt, leaves, small rocks and much vehicle glass to see if I could “eyeball” the wedding band.
  3. Metal detecting limited places that were free from the metal reinforcements hidden underneath the ground.

    Looking Straight Down Towards the Bottom of the Ravine While Metal Detecting the Side of the Crag

    After dealing with so much interference coming from the metal slabs below, I came to realize the degree of difficulty this search entailed. It wasn’t just the existing danger and distraction of having to carefully maneuver my body, my detecting equipment and climbing gear from one side of the cliff to the other. But in addition to that, it was the lack of clarity coming from the target signals to my headphones. This may have been the reason that Ross couldn’t find success on any of his 3 attempts at the recovery site. Effective metal detecting would have been nearly impossible considering his lack of experience detecting and the tough environment that he was competing against where he couldn’t make sense out of his target signals coming from the wall of metal that was so prevalent. I thought to myself as I tried to make sense of what I was working with, ‘The metal rebar may be masking our cherished gold target that we have been looking for’.

    After about five hours of searching, checking all of the spots that were indicated by the photographs and testimony from what Hannah had shared with me, the wedding band still did not show up. I moved around to different places on the side of the ridge, using the ropes as perfect swings as I leaned forward with my detector to scan the mountainside. Still nothing of importance was discovered. Hannah’s husband had come out several times before I started my searches and between the two of us, up to this point, we were both still coming up empty handed.

    I only focused on the side of the cliff where Ross had slid down and where he propped himself back up and moved back up to higher ground in order to communicate with the driver to remain calm and not to remove himself from the vehicle. I did not focus on the other side where Ross had briefly moved over to continue helping the distressed man. Also, I did not take my gear to the next level down the rock face at that point in my search. It would prove necessary to attack that area, just in case the ring possibly rolled further below the escarpment or that it was accidentally pushed down to the next tier of rock, dirt and leaves.

    Those other spots would have to wait for another search date because I had expended all of my time and it was getting quite cold outside after all of those hours of searching. I did not want to leave the location, but I knew that my time was up. Night was going to be falling soon and I had already used up what time I could give to the hunt that day. Reluctantly, I packed up all of my gear and carefully ascended my way back up the steep ridge.

    After returning to my car and loading up everything, I drove away from the bridge without a doubt that if the ring was actually at this search sight the whole time, I would eventually find the “hidden treasure”. I stayed hopeful that Ross’s wedding band would reveal itself to me at some point, wherever it may have been hiding.

    As I drove back down the mountain, I heard that all too familiar voice that starts whispering doubts in my head when search efforts stretch out to longer periods of time. It says to me, “What if the ring was never lost on that cliff? What if the ring slipped off Ross’s finger as he was getting out of his vehicle to go help the distressed man? What if someone had already found his wedding band and did not turn it in? Or maybe the ring was lost at the current search site, but what if it rested on some ledge far below the area where I am searching? And maybe it’s not accessible and you’re wasting all of your time and energy”. So many questions bombard my mind each time this type of difficulty emerges in a search and recovery operation such as this. But, each time, I have to remain steadfast and determine to complete the search that I started and to come to a point where I know without a doubt that there was no other possible locations that I could search. I have to know that I did everything I could that was in the realm of being safe and what was humanly possible. I was far from throwing in the towel at that stage.

    The next day I spent some time on the phone with Hannah, reviewing my second search attempt details with her. Now that I had been at the crash site for an extensive period of time, it was important that I got answers to all of my new questions. This is the point in the story when Hannah had to decide whether she wanted to bring Ross into the search circle again. Originally she wanted this to be a surprise if the ring was found without asking him for further details. However, I needed to narrow the focus in exactly where Ross had moved about, rather than just the approximations of what Hannah remembered Ross sharing and illustrating when he was down on that cliff. It didn’t take long before the Marine’s wife decided to bring Ross into the discussion.

    The Marine was quite touched that his thoughtful wife had taken such initiative to oversee this recovery operation to search for Ross’s cherished possession. I conveyed all that I needed to know through Hannah and she in turn asked Ross all of the necessary questions. It was a bit complicated because he could only talk at certain times and he was limited to certain types of communication. It depended upon many factors which I cannot recall now what they were at the time. As Hannah fed Ross various inquiries, in addition to sending him photos that I took to diagram or comment on, she would then send me his updated information for me to study and review. It was quite amazing that we were talking between Maryland, Virginia and Kuwait. All of this communication was imperative in giving me the best chance to not only hit and re-hit the places that I had not searched or that I needed to re-focus on, but it would give me added confidence in the exact locations of where Ross remembered moving about on that dreadful day back in September.

    Hannah Connects with Ross Across the World to Diagram the Areas Where Ross Moved about the Crash Site

    So many photos were being diagrammed by Ross. Hannah would clarify tons of details and if I had questions on specific ones, I would have her get more information for me from Ross. Arrows and lines were drawn all over the photos, indicating where he slid down the cliff, where he ended up, and then where he moved over to from place to place on the side of the decline! Hannah even provided me a diagram of where one of the first responders grabbed Ross’s hand to help assist him up the rock face when he was exiting the scene. I love the technology we have today!

    After I acquired all of the intel that we could muster up, I was very confident that I had every bit of information that was possible to effectively search out all of the spots that remained. It brought clarity in knowing where Ross had moved about and what places remained as questionable as to where the wedding band may have ended up. The last logistic that needed to be put in place was scheduling time for me to go back to Big Pool to resume the search.

    I texted Hannah later that same day and gave her the update on my schedule for the next week or so. Thanksgiving was coming up that week and the following week I was taking my son back to college. So, the next available search day where I could be outside for most of the day would be Friday, December 6th and Saturday the 7th. It turned out that Saturday the 7th would end up being the day that I chose to return to the site. After I texted Hannah about my available search date, she texted back:

    “I’m sure if it’s still there after three months, it’ll be there still in a couple of weeks!”

    I responded:

    “Oh, most definitely! It will remain safe! I’m chewing at the bit to get back to the search site. If the site was closer to where I live, I could start at 7 AM and search for a couple hours at a time and then keep coming back every couple of days. But unfortunately, it’s too far away to make casual trips. There’s too much preparation. But don’t worry, I am committed to returning the ring within the boundaries of what is humanly possible! It will get priority! It’s just we are dealing with timing issues as the holidays are approaching.”

    The day before the scheduled search day, Hannah texted me and said:

    “I listened to your voicemail from yesterday and everything sounds good for the search tomorrow. Ross circled another spot in a picture which I will text to you now.”

    I responded back:

    “Fantastic! Great information! Thanks! Let’s talk after 5 PM and later tonight to debrief!”

    Later that evening we went over all the last details that we needed to go over including the most recent photo that Ross had sent over with his markings on it that he hoped would help me on Search Day 3 which would be the following day. Then, we agreed that we would touch base in the evening after I finished at the site. If I had any questions for Hannah, she said that she would try to make herself available even though she had a holiday party to attend to. Hannah would keep her phone with her just in case.

    Search Day 3

    December 7, 2019. You never know how these searches work themselves out. I get the question asked all the time: “What is your percentage of success when doing these search and recovery operations?” The answer depends upon so many factors, so you never can give one answer to each person who asks. In regards to this particular account, though it seemed most likely that the ring fell off of Ross’s finger when he was put into rescue mode out there on the cliff, there was no way of knowing for certain that that was what actually occurred. Nothing had been found by any of the emergency crews, nor by Ross or myself in all of the attempts thus far. Yet, even without knowing where the ring ended up, I was determined to give it my all and believe that it was still accessible at the crash site. I did not want to believe that it never ended up there in the first place, or that someone else had already picked it up and did not turn it in.

    I gathered all my gear together and went through my checklist the morning of the search, to make sure that I had everything ready to go so that I could spend most of my time at the site and not having to go through pieces of gear here and there, hoping that I had everything when I got to the location of the search.

    I headed off up the mountain sometime mid morning, hoping that this would be the day when I was able to pull the ring from that treacherous area.

    A Bizarre Accident on Search Day 3 Just a Couple of Miles from the Cliff

    As I drove towards Big Pool, I will never forget the sight that I saw on the right shoulder of the road just a few miles from my destination. I saw a car that was flipped over on its side, facing in the wrong direction! The driver of the vehicle was just standing there beside his car, staring at this crazy site as if he was still trying to figure out how it ended up in that bizarre position! I don’t know how in the world that Mercedes ended up like it did! It was so strange of a site that I had to take a picture of it as the cars slowed down to view this odd occurrence. I thought to myself, ‘This is one dangerous stretch of highway!’

    Soon, I arrived back at the bridge sometime around 11:30 a.m., I believe. Again, I immediately grabbed all of my backpacks and gear out of the vehicle, set up the emergency cones, and headed for the cliff once more. This time around I would be focusing on the other side of this large mound of rock where the actual car ended up between that big boulder and a tree. That’s where it was suspended. I would take some metal detecting time to repel down off of the side of that part of the cliff and see if the ring landed down the hill on that side. I planned to search everywhere even though the cliff was extremely steep. There was never a moment that I felt safe even with the climbing ropes, the Grigor and the other climbing mechanisms.

    Heading Back Down the Cliff to Search for Ross’s Wedding Band

    Inch by inch and foot by foot, I examined all of the different areas that I discussed with Hannah which she had previously reviewed with Ross. I looked over the diagrams while I was suspended on the side of the cliff to make sure that I had all of my search spots organized in my mind in order to check them all out. I made sure that I used a sniper coil which is a small six-inch disc on one of my detectors so I could try to see if I could get any separation in the signals between the large metal slabs that were below the rock, dirt and small objects (like a ring) in order to be able to see if there were any differences in the target signal that were showing up on the detector screen. Almost immediately I saw a difference in my way of being able to search with my metal detector. I noticed differences in the metals that I was picking up on the machine when I would pinpoint and dig up particular targets. They would be found next-to or on top of large pieces of metal in those areas. This was extremely successful in me being able to differentiate different types of metal. It wasn’t 100% perfect in helping me spot various types of objects, but it was a whole lot better than using the larger coil that I had implemented a couple of weeks back.

    The weather that I was working with on this day was good enough to conduct a full search that afternoon. It was cold outside and as the hours progressed, it would get much more frigid out there. However, the gear that I was wearing was doing a fine job in keeping me warm.

    Steep Drop Below as Metal Detecting Ensued

    As the search continued, I threw my climbing ropes farther down below and repelled to the next level off the side of the cliff. I brought another hundred foot rope to extend my search much farther than I had in my other search attempts which gave me some more flexibility in metal detecting areas that I was not able to reach in my previous attempts.

    I kept moving to all of the spots that I studied with Hannah on the phone, which were passed along from Ross and it made all the difference in the world with this added intel. When I couldn’t find the ring after dropping a good 10 to 15 feet more, I decided to go up the cliff a bit and over to the right to where Ross had been dialoguing with the man in distress. He got up and stood near the rock which was holding the vehicle that was propped up to one side. I went all around those areas and searched more carefully than my last visit, but still there was no ring found. At that point, I decided I would go off the other side of the cliff and repel down about 25 feet or so to see if perhaps the ring ended up on the other side of the rock. Using two ropes, one as an emergency line and the other one as my main descent line, I carefully made my way down the steep decline and used my right hand to metal detect while I locked in the rope with my left as well as kept tension on it to make sure that I was safe. If I told you that I was not conducting a dangerous type of procedure, I would not be honest with the reader. I was looking down into the ravine, viewing the water and the rocks below and if anything failed on my equipment, there would be no way that I could survive the fall. Wearing my safety helmet and using all of the gear that I had with me was the best that I could do under the circumstances, but there are no guarantees for something to go wrong and I was doing everything I could to minimize any room for error.

    Letting Out Rope from the Grigri Belay to Continue the Descent

    I probably spent around 40 minutes on that side of the cliff, which was way more steep than on the original side where Ross had slipped down the ridge. I made sure that my metal detector searched every possible place on that side, making certain that I didn’t miss a spot. Most of what I picked up on my machine was many metal parts from the destroyed vehicle. However, it did not mean that the ring couldn’t have flown farther down. After a hard search, I resolved to work my way back up the ridge and try again on the other side, but move farther down even more.

As I started making my way back around the side of the cliff, I ended up losing ground below my boots and I was literally hanging in midair because all of the rocks and ground just came out from underneath me! Had I not had those ropes and the emergency line connected to my harness, I definitely would have fallen all the way down into the ravine. It was certainly a close call. I felt extremely vulnerable being completely suspended in the air like being on a swing. I was able to move my gear up, notch to notch, inch by inch, until I was able to make more traction and move my way farther up the cliff until I was able to get to level ground. Then, when I reached the top, I headed back down to the other side of the ridge where Ross originally lost his footing.

 

View of the Area Above

Making an Observational Statement into the GoPro Video Camera While Swinging Hands-Free with the Climbing Ropes

It was about that point where I took a break and decided to have something to drink before repelling farther down the original search location. With my ropes securing me tightly as I sat on a ledge, I thought that perhaps Ross’s ring may have bounced farther down the cliff. It was possible that when the other first responders were moving about at the crash site, their boots could have kicked a lot of dirt, leaves and maybe even the ring farther down to the next level. I only had a good 20 feet more to search before I would end up having to repel off the side of that cliff to another shelf that was way down below.

After the short break, with my safety rope attached and my emergency line in place, I moved my way down the crag until I reached an area where I could balance myself with the lines that I made quite taught. Unfortunately, I was getting more interference coming from more rebar below the surface. I used the 6 inch coil on my detector to do what I did earlier, which was to try to see if there were any breaks in the target signals to indicate that there may be more than one piece of metal in the spot that I was detecting. Nothing turned up except miscellaneous pieces of metal from the destroyed vehicle that ended up between the rock and the tree.

Suspended by Climbing Ropes as I Viewed the Territory Below

The Wedding Ring Revealed Once Brought Up from Beneath the Leaves and Debris!

As I approached the fifth hour of searching, I was already 30 minutes into detecting my new position. I moved farther down the rock to almost the very edge where I could not go any farther without dropping off another 25 feet or so. I continued to move the machine over more leaves, pieces of bark and plenty more pieces of sharded glass from the automobile. Finally, I got a new signal that was coming in pretty sharp in the range of a man’s wedding band. There were other pieces of metal surrounding that target space so I wasn’t sure if it was a combination of more than one piece that I was detecting at one time or not. I did a little bit more experimenting around that target area and it was clear that there was a small object buried in the leaves and dirt at that lower spot on the edge of the cliff. The target signal was detected about a foot away from the drop off. It was so close to the edge that if I had brushed my boot over that area of leaves and dirt, it would have absolutely scattered that mound of debris down to the next level of rock which was another 25 feet below. So, I carefully reached for my pinpointer and reviewed the area where the signal was coming from. I then moved my hands into the leaves and dirt to reveal the object that was hidden below the surface.

The Very Spot Where Ross’s Special Family Heirloom was Unearthed! The Decorated Marine was Correct All-Along! The Missing Ring was in-fact Lost During the Brave Marine’s Rescue Efforts!

Just as I sifted through the second clump of dirt and leaves, to my astonishment, I saw something shiny and yellow in color! It was something that clearly did not belong out there, all alone, buried in debris on the side of the cliff! Peeking out of all that nature was the wedding band that I had been relentlessly looking for for so very long! I found it at last! It was a surreal moment! The amount of jubilation that I was experiencing at that moment was off the scale! Because I had been in “search mode” for so long each time I visited the site, discovering the ring was almost unreal to me! As if I was living in a dream!

 

Knowing that Ross had tried several times to recover the ring and having made several attempts myself to find the band while being extremely vulnerable with hanging off the side of a cliff connected to climbing gear, the “challenge of the chase” made this moment of triumph even more sweeter and impossible to believe!

What an Amazing Moment!

I immediately took a hold of the ring and let out an incredible sigh of relief! I couldn’t believe that my search was over! When you expend so much of your energy and time working on the information handed to you and going to the search site over and over again, having to be so careful not to put your life in jeopardy while searching for something such as this, you start to lose the anticipation of finding the ring. Even though you’ve had enough experience with overcoming rejection after rejection from false signals or bad targets that you uncover from the ground, you still fall into a mindset of “I wonder if these efforts will ever pan out”! And it finally did!

Elated and Relieved!

I wanted to shout with joy and relief, so I did let out some words of excitement out there all alone on that cliff! I would have to review the video of my search to get the exact dialogue that I expressed, but all I know is that I was emotionally filled with excitement which I couldn’t hold back! I reviewed in my head all of the time that Ross and Hannah had come to the search site and came away with nothing. I thought about my other two attempts that led to no avail. Then, I thought of all the hours that I had been out there searching that afternoon leading up to this incredible discovery! It was such a memorable moment and now I had something to share with Hannah that would absolutely lift her spirits and eventually her husband’s!

As I sat there on the steep rock, I recalled the initial email that I received from Hannah, wishing that I could bring a glimmer of hope to the couple in attempting to recover the lost wedding band. Now that the ring was found, the precious story attached to it would continue on in its family history! First starting 36 years earlier when Ross’s father and mother “tied the knot”, and then again with the exchange of rings between Hannah and Ross on their own wedding day just a couple of years ago! How fantastic was this moment! This very special family heirloom would not remain lost forever at this horrific crash site! It wouldn’t stay buried under nature with no hope of ever being recovered! No! On the contrary, it would live on and the memories made around it would be celebrated for decades to come and beyond!

My Mission was Over! A Success!

I remember as I was fastened to those ropes on the side of the cliff, staring at that handsome wedding band with my hands trembling with excitement! Once I documented the incredible moment of joy, I immediately inserted the special piece of gold onto my car key carabiner clip for safe keeping. Just before starting to pack up my gear and head back up to the top, I took pictures of where the ring was eventually found and I measured the distance from the recovery spot to the edge of that section of cliff.

After gathering all my things up, which included putting my tools back into the backpacks and returning my metal detector to its carrying bag, I made my first trip back up the cliff to bring the first load of gear to the side of the highway where the newly constructed guardrail was put into place. I then returned down again to gather my last bit of gear before climbing back up, releasing one rope from the tree and then the other from the guard rail that were both attached to my harness.

My mission was complete! I was freed from the danger below. As I stood at the top of the cliff and looked down at where I had been suspended by those ropes, words could not describe what I saw and felt. So many pieces of that destroyed car were scattered everywhere. I thought about the terrible accident once more, with what that poor man must have gone through when he flew through the guardrail and down the side of the rock where he almost lost his life. I thought about Ross and how he heroically responded to the situation, doing what no one else volunteered to do when he headed down the side of that cliff, his body faltering until he grabbed a hold of what he could find to bring himself back up to assist the distressed individual. I would leave the scene now where so much tragedy and drama once took place. The wedding band was the last survivor to be rescued from the side of the escarpment, three months after the initial emergency had taken place.
Ross’s ring would finally be reunited with him upon his return home from Kuwait in the month of May 2020! In the meantime, I would have the great pleasure of sharing the incredible news with his wife! Once I got everything back in my vehicle, I went out into the woods and set up a video camera to capture the moment when I would reveal to Hannah what I finally found on the side of the cliff! It was a ring reveal I will never forget! She was beyond surprised and overjoyed with my discovery!

Beyond Thrilled to Return the Lost Wedding Band to Ross’s Wife, Hannah near Quantico Base, Virginia

Hannah did not wait to share the surprise news with Ross over the phone that his special ring had remarkably been recovered!  She even audio recorded his reaction when he heard what would be waiting for him on his dresser upon his arrival back home from Kuwait! He was so taken back and emotionally blown away by the reality that he was in fact going to be able to wear this precious family heirloom once again! It wasn’t lost forever! Ross was just as surprised as Hannah had been at the moment when I first revealed the results of my search with her on that cold, late fall evening!

Following that night, a week or so later, I would drive the handsome keepsake down to the Quantico base area where I happily presented Ross’s wedding band back into the hands of his beloved wife Hannah. She was beyond thrilled to finally hold that sentimental ring in her hand once again and celebrate the return of something so special as her husband’s wedding band that was presumably lost forever. Had she not initially contacted me those many weeks earlier with the determination to not give up searching for the ring, that memorable reunion with the wedding band would have never taken place.

In the end, Hannah could not wait to share three beautiful parts of their marriage with Ross upon his arrival back home the following year:

First, it was the long awaited embrace of his lovely wife who patiently counted the days until her man’s return.

Secondly, it was the much anticipated delivery of the couple’s beautiful baby boy which Ross had arrived back in the States just in the nick of time to be a part of that unforgettable moment!

Thirdly, it was the precious14 karat gold wedding band that had gone missing for so many months which Ross couldn’t wait to slip back on his ring finger once again!

Apparently, without question, this special Marine had quite a bit of treasure to come home to!

 

If you would like to view the video of this incredible ring reveal, please subscribe to my YouTube channel and you will be notified when the search video is uploaded onto YouTube.

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If you would like to watch the SEARCH VIDEO and the RING REVEAL pertaining to this story, the video will be uploaded soon. To receive a NOTIFICATION letting you know when the video is uploaded to YOUTUBE: go to YOUTUBE by CLICKING THE LINK BELOW or OPEN your YOUTUBE APP on your device. In the SEARCH BAR, type: THE RING RETURNER, click SUBSCRIBE and lastly, CLICK ON THE “BELL” to receive NOTIFICATIONS when this latest search video is available to view! 

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