Hunting for Precious Treasure

By Maggie Boineau

2017 marks a milestone year for Trippett and Lindsay Boineau, our son and daughter-in-law, who celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary in May. Memories of their beautiful ceremony in Pawleys Island always make their visits back to the beach extra special. Spending time at Lindsay’s family beach house in South Litchfield Beach with their three beautiful little girls, ages 6, 3, and 1 year, is lively, as you can imagine!

They carve out as much time as possible in July at the beach house, so they can spend time with family and friends who gather to enjoy the 4th of July holiday. As their last day of vacation rolled around, they spent the day the way they had every other, playing on the beach with the girls and enjoying the waves, searching for seashells, and just relaxing.

Without a second thought, Lindsay took off her rings to put sunscreen on baby Elinor, and Trippett placed them in her chair’s cup holder. Three-year-old Caroline had been busy collecting shells and putting them in the same cup holder alongside the rings. When you have three small children, your mind is always on them, and it was later that evening, after the girls had their baths and were put to bed, that Lindsay realized that her rings were missing. How did little Caroline’s collection of seashells make it to dinner that night just fine, but not a thought was given about the rings?

What to do? In complete darkness, they went about retracing their steps, but it proved to be frustrating and they gave up for the night. After a restless night’s sleep, worried about the loss of her rings, Lindsay, who has a knack for figuring things out, went on a Google search and typed: “What to do when you lose your rings at the beach?” She soon realized that she was not the first person to make that same search. She found that there are actually professionals who search for lost jewelry, and there was such a person close by, namely Matt Fry.

Trippett was a bit skeptical, but more than happy to do whatever was necessary to get the rings back. After all, the diamond in Lindsay’s engagement ring had belonged to Trippett’s late grandmother, Elinor, and it could never be replaced. This treasured ring, along with two beautiful bands, were somewhere in the sand, and he and Lindsay wanted desperately to find them.

Enter Matt Fry, a member of The Ring Finders. Driven by the hunt and the satisfaction of a successful find, Matt goes about his business of finding lost treasures. Lindsay reached him early the following day and after Matt heard the circumstances, he determined that 4 PM would be the right time to start the search based on the tides. Positive and upbeat, Matt told them that this is something he does for fun in his spare time. He only asks for a small fee to cover expenses, and also accepts tips. When Trippett met him at the beach at the appointed time with the two older girls, he tried to give Matt the initial $40 fee; Matt refused it and said it was bad luck. He was set on finding the rings and had them do a funny dance, say a quick prayer and pull on their left ears for good luck.

Matt explained that when rings are lost on the beach, even when the water washes over them, they immediately sink into the wet sand rather than being washed out to sea. He went about his business by making a large X in the sand where they thought they had been. He started there and made a grid of the beach and the areas north of the X, heading mainly north because that was the way the current was moving.

Working for a couple of hours, Lindsay met him back at the beach to show him the actual beach chair to see if that could shed any light on where the rings may have slipped out. He had exhausted a large section of the grid except for a small section where another group of beachgoers had camped out for the day. After they left, he checked out that area and immediately got a nice signal and pulled up a beautiful platinum band with some inlaid diamonds, which was one of the two bands that were grouped around the main engagement ring. Five feet away, there it was – her beautiful engagement ring!

Now, there was one more band to find. There was a really faint signal about 20 feet away from the main ring, and he thought there was no possible way that it could be that deep, but it was – 8 inches deep in the sand was the second band to complete the set.

When Lindsay got the call from Matt, he quietly said: “Lindsay, I am stopping the search for the rings.” There was a pause, and then he said, “Because I found your rings!” In disbelief, Lindsay was shaking and crying and laughing all at the same time! “I felt stupid for even taking off the rings at the beach. I know better than to do that, and I was mad at myself for forgetting to put them back on and not realizing I didn’t have them on for several hours,” she said. “While I try not to get worked up over lost ‘things,’ I also knew my original engagement ring and wedding band could never be replaced.”

When Lindsay and baby Elinor met him back at the truck, he was struck with the significance of Grandmother Elinor’s precious diamond and the precious namesake baby Elinor who clearly did not know that it was not just another day at the beach!

Lindsay and Trippett are so grateful for good people in the world who just want to help. “He wanted to hunt for them, find them, and make us happy! I am beyond thrilled to have my rings back!” Lindsay explained. Matt Fry is clearly a good person!

Contact Matt Fry at www.theringfinders.com/Matthew.Fry, email him at matthew.fry@theringfinders.com or call 843-333-4114.

Matt and his metal detector have had many success stories finding personal treasures.

About this writer

  • Maggie Boineau

    Maggie Boineau

    Maggie Boineau is a Murrells Inlet resident and a real estate agent during the week and a hunter on the weekend. She writes about her life at www.camo365.com.

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One Response to “Hunting for Precious Treasure”

  1. Linda O'Connell says:

    Maggie, your story was compelling, and I was holding my breath hoping you’d find your rings.

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