A Massachusetts woman is breathing a huge sigh of relief after finding an heirloom diamond ring that she accidentally threw out with the trash last week.
On Nov. 8, Joan Sawyer of Bedford, Mass., cleaned the ring, which a great-aunt had passed down to her, and then wrapped it up in a paper towel to dry. Later that night, while cleaning up, she tossed the paper towel into the trash and put it outside for pickup on Wednesday morning.
She said she didn’t realize her mistake until the trash truck had already come and gone.
“I had to get ready to go to the doctor and when I went to get my ring, I realized I had thrown it out,” she told the Eagle-Tribune newspaper. “I thought about running after the truck but thought the driver wasn’t going to dump it in the road.”
She and her husband, Bill Sawyer, contacted the Department of Public Works and then Allied Waste Service, whose truck had removed the trash in their neighborhood and was now headed to Covanta, a waste-to-energy facility.
The couple waited three hours for the truck to arrive. With the help of Covanta workers, the Sawyers, donning hard hats, safety glasses and long-sleeved shirts, picked through the bags of trash till they came across items they recognized.
“I said, ‘That’s my bag,” Joan Sawyer told the Eagle-Tribune.
When her husband unrolled the paper towel, the ring dropped to the floor. Joan Sawyer said she nearly fainted.
“I was shaking and all the workers were so happy they were hugging me,” she said.