A stranger with a metal detector came to the rescue of a Bethpage couple searching for a wedding ring lost on Tobay Beach.
Debbie Potter, 28, said she was relaxing at the beach Saturday when she removed her wedding ring to put sunscreen on her two young sons, Brayson and Jonah. She gave the ring to her husband, Brandon Potter, 29, who placed it in the pocket of her shorts. But as family members gathered their belongings to leave, they discovered the ring was gone.
In a panic, Potter said her husband took to Facebook. He posted onto a few Long Island Facebook groups about the ring, which was custom-made for the couple by his father.
Luckily for him, Mike Jandris, a metal-detecting hobbyist, saw Potter’s post and said he would help him search for the wedding ring.
Jandris, 49, of Holtsville, drove to the beach and met with Potter just as the sun was about to set that day. He said it only took him about 5 minutes of scanning the sand with his metal detector before he found it.
“I told him we had to get down there immediately before other guys with metal detectors found it,” Jandris said. “He showed me where they were and I got a really good hit. I grabbed a big scoop of sand and the ring was there at the bottom.”
Potter gave Jandris a big hug afterward and tried to give him a few hundred dollars as a reward. Jandris turned it down and only reluctantly accepted “a few bucks for gas money,” Debbie Potter said.
“I never thought I would ever see it again and we would never have been able to replace it,” she said. “It was complete devastation and then absolute joy in one day. I had never experienced anything like that before, and to have a complete stranger drive all the way out to help us was just amazing.”
With the ring safely back on his wife’s finger, Potter recounted their happy ending on Facebook Sunday night. His post has since been shared almost 300 times and liked nearly 5,000 times.
“This blew my mind, this guy who has never met me or my wife is willing to help us find her ring, let alone drive out of his way to help,” Potter wrote. “He truly is a hero to me and my wife.”