Newlyweds from New York are to be reunited with a lost wedding ring thanks to the efforts of a Bermudian metal detector.
The couple lost the treasured ring on a trip to Tobacco Bay in St George’s, but veteran treasure hunter Andrew Roberts came to the rescue.
Sean Hickey lost the ring while he played volleyball in the waters off the bay.
He said he “knew immediately” after striking the waterlogged ball that his ring had come off. Mr Hickey added: “I just froze in place and told everybody what happened.”
He described it as a state of “shock and disbelief”.
Mr Hickey added: “I thought that we would be able to find it just by swimming around — so I had some immediate hope.”
But an hours-long search which involved close to a dozen people and snorkelling gear failed to locate the lost ring.
He said: “I was depressed that it was the ring that she put on my finger just a month ago.
“There isn’t another ring like that.”
Mr Hickey, 33, was on the island with wife Sara, 31, and family members when he lost the ring on July 3.
The couple had married only weeks earlier in Madrid, Spain.
A frantic Mr Hickey said he scoured the internet for information about rings lost in the sea.
He came across an article in The Royal Gazette about the recovery of Brazilian supermodel Natalia Borges’s ring just weeks earlier and Mr Roberts’s recovery of the family heirloom.
Mr Hickey said an internet search led him to Mr Roberts and he contacted him the next day. Mr Roberts, who was in New York City on a trip organised as a reward for finding Ms Borges’s ring, promised to help when he returned to Bermuda.
Mr Hickey said: “He said he would give it all he had.
“He seemed optimistic. I was not optimistic, but I was just trying to grab onto any hope that I could find.
“He offered me some hope in that moment.”
Mr Roberts returned to the island two days later and called Mr Hickey the same day to say he’d found the missing ring.
Mr Hickey said: “I was just shocked. A tear came to my eye of thankfulness that he was able to do this.”
Mr Hickey confirmed the inscription on the ring and a staff member at Tobacco Bay travelling to New York this weekend offered to reunite Mr Hickey with it.
He added that Mr Roberts had asked for nothing in return for his help.
Mr Hickey said: “He didn’t mention anything about that, ever.
“That’s one of the things that impressed me the most. There are really good people that are looking to help others out there.”
Mr Roberts, 38, said that his recovery work was about trying to give back.
He added: “It’s stressful enough to lose something that’s that valuable, important and cherished.”
Mr Roberts, who owns a tyre and battery business, said he had carried out search work for the past two years.
He added he had got a couple of calls a week from people who had lost valuables since the article about Ms Borges’s ring was published last month.
Mr Roberts said that being able to reunite people with lost items was rewarding.
He added: “It’s an emotional experience for everybody.”