NZ man's lost ring resurfaces after 40 years

Wellington, Sep 15 (ANI): A Wellington man who lost a ring 40 years ago in an American lake may soon be reunited with it after he heard his treasured possession has been found.

Two self-proclaimed treasure hunters claim to have found the ring at Lakeside Beach, at Port Huron in Michigan, and have spent the past 10 years trying to reunite the ring with its owner, American Stephen Pike, who moved to New Zealand in 2004.

Pike said that his Chelmsford High School class ring was lost when it slipped off his then-girlfriend's finger while the pair were swimming in 1970.

"I dove looking for it but couldn't see anything in the water," the New Zealand Herald quoted Pike as saying.

They continued searching for hours, but finally gave up "broken-hearted".

Thirty years later, Harold and Linda Mitchell happened to be swimming in the same spot and caught a glimpse of the ring shining beneath them.

"We were in deeper water and I could see the ring sitting on top of the sand," Mitchell told the Chelmsford Mass News.

"I guess a storm had kicked up and it was laying on the bottom in about 10 feet of water. It was in great shape."

The couple, who spend time scouring the waterways of southeast Michigan with underwater metal detectors, were keen to reunite the ring with its owner.

Ten years of searching, using online social networking sites, finally paid off when he tracked down Pike.

"I always said I'd go to the end of the world to return this," said Mr Mitchell.

"I guess I did."

Pike said getting the email to say his ring had been found 40 years later was "pretty incredible".

"It's nice for this piece of life to come back around and complete itself and it's nice to see a perfect stranger doing an act of kindness."

Despite lying on the lake floor for 30 years, the ring "looks straight out of the box", added Pike. (ANI)

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