I had the opportunity to be part of an extremely special and exciting recovery this past weekend in
Wildwood, NJ. Holden and Carley are high school sweethearts from the Hershey, PA area who were in
town helping with their local color guard who competed at the Tournament of Bands Indoor
Championship at the Wildwoods Convention Center. Carley enjoys looking for seashells, so Holden’s
plan was to propose to her on the beach the night before they were leaving to go home.
Holden put the engagement ring in his shirt pocket before they left for the beach, so he could pull it out
easily when it was time to propose. They were out on the beach for a while collecting shells, but when it
was time to take the ring out of his pocket, he realized it wasn’t there. He figured it fell out while
bending over to pick up a shell and thought it was lost forever. His mother Christi’s friend suggested
they give me a call to help find the ring, so she texted me a little after 10 PM on Saturday night. We met
at the entrance to the beach a few minutes after I responded to their text, and he gave me more
information about the sequence of events from earlier that day and landmarks he remembered.
The search area was quite large, and it was close to 11 PM before I got started. It was dark, chilly and windy on the beach that night, but we were determined to find the ring. After gridding for roughly 25 minutes, I stopped to ask Holden a few more questions which quickly led me to where the ring was buried. A few swings with the metal detector in a more precise area, and the ring was found!
The events that unfolded next were truly awesome to watch. Holden went back to meet Carley and was
able to propose with the engagement ring. It is a memory that will not be forgotten.