Amy Harris would never have spotted a wedding band in the sand of Idaho’s Redfish Lake one August day had her dog been splashing in the water alongside her, as he almost always does.
One month earlier, Alair Schroeder would never have lost her wedding band at the lake’s dog beach had her brother not been visiting from out of town with his dog.
Yet those are the conditions connecting the two Idaho women in an almost too-unbelievable-to-believe-it story of lost and found.
Harris, 38, of Nampa, Idaho, was on her family’s annual vacation to the lake’s camping grounds the first weekend in August when she spotted the wedding band at the bottom of the lake.
“We always go to the same area of the dog beach and it was our last day there, and I was wading out about knee-deep, by myself because for some reason our dog wouldn’t come out with me, looking for rocks and things for my kids,” Harris, a mother of three, told ABCNews.com. “I looked down and saw something shiny, and I figured it was a bolt or something.”
“I saw it was a wedding band and I just thought, ‘Oh, my gosh, somebody is so sad,’” she said. “I put myself in that position and thought, ‘This means so much to somebody.’”
Harris showed the ring to Jody, her husband of 12 years, and the couple carried it back with them to their home in Nampa, where they stored it in a drawer and posted an ad on Craigslist.
By November, when no one had claimed the ring, Jody Harris called an old friend, Richard Black, an owner of Ingram’s Fine Jewelers, in Idaho Falls, a town more than four hours away, to see what they should do with it.
“He called to see what it was worth and to ask how long you hold on to something like this before you sell it,” Harris said. “We had planned to hold on to it for a year but wondered, What’s the next step?”
Black, in turn, asked Harris’s husband a very specific question that caught him off-guard.
“Richard said, ‘Did your wife happen to find this on the dog beach?’” Harris recalled.
Black, they discovered, attends the same church as Alair Schroeder and Dana, her husband of 38 years. The couple had been visiting Redfish Lake, as they do every summer, when Schroeder’s wedding band fell off as she waded in the water.
The Schroeders, who could not be reached today by ABCNews.com, had gone to Black’s jewelry store to purchase a replacement ring and told him the story of how the ring was lost.
“Richard called and told them, ‘Hey, I think I found your ring,’” Harris said. “Her husband told him [Alair] hasn’t stopped screaming since she found out.”
Amy and Jody Harris brought the ring to Black’s store when they visited Idaho Falls for Thanksgiving. The Schroeders were out of town at the time so the two couples have yet to meet in person but have talked by phone and Facebook.
“She was like, ‘Amy, it’s Alair,’ and I knew right then who I was talking to,” Harris said of their first phone conversation. “I was so excited to talk to her and we just started talking about the miracle of events and how it all took place.”
The Schroeders offered Harris a reward for finding such a treasure, but Harris would hear nothing of it.
“They asked us what our finder’s fee would be and we said, ‘Oh, nothing, nothing, nothing,’” Harris said. “I just hope that it’s good karma if I ever lose my wedding ring. Besides my children and my husband, my wedding ring is the next most important thing because it symbolizes a lot.”
“It’s a miracle,” she said.