-- Talk about being in the right place at the right time.
David Brenner, of Littleton, Colorado, lost his gold wedding band five years ago while on a skiing trip with his family in Vail.
“He was on the chairlift going up the mountain and he got a business phone call and he needed to take it,” Brenner’s wife, Sue, told ABC News. “He had to take off his glove and that’s when he must’ve lost it, but he didn’t realize it was gone until later that night.”
As soon as the family realized the ring was missing they reported it to lost and found, unfortunately with no luck. Not giving up hope quite that easily, they checked back six months later during the summertime after all the snow had melted, still to no avail.
“Nothing happened, they never found it,” explained Sue, 54. “We said, ‘OK, it will never be found.’ So we started shopping and bought him a new ring. At that point we felt it was just a possession, we’re still happily married, and life goes on."
Life did move on until last week, a full five years later, when a series of random events suddenly thrust the once cold case of the missing ring wide open again.
“I truly believe the way I found it may have been less likely than that ring being found itself,” Brenner, 57, said of fortuitous series of events.
“I’m a mortgage lender, I meet with clients,” he added. “Greg and Sue were my clients I was meeting with yesterday. I’ve been doing this job for 30 years and I’ve taken thousands of loan applications and of all those times, I may have mentioned my wife’s name four times.”
But on this particular occasion, Brenner just happened to mention that he and his wife, also named Sue, had just returned from an Alaskan vacation.
“The gentleman sitting here says, ‘Wait your wife’s name is Sue? Did you lose a wedding ring?,’” Brenner recalled.
As the client was sitting in his meeting with Brenner, he was receiving text messages from a friend about a local news story trying to find the owner of a gold wedding band with the inscription, "All my love, Sue,” that had recently been found at a Vail ski resort.
Brenner’s client had never lost a ring, so he casually asked Brenner if he possibly had, since both of their wives shared the same name.
“He’s sitting in front of me getting this text and just happened to have heard my wife’s name,” said Brenner. “Had this guy never said a word, that could have been the ring and I would have never known and the ring never would have found its owner.”
The wedding band had been discovered several weeks ago by a maintenance worker doing routine checks at the ski lift where it must have slipped off Brenner’s finger.
On July 29, the Vail social team posted photos of the ring, plus the inscription, to their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages in hopes that the power of social media could help return the ring to its rightful owner.
Local affiliate, KMGH, picked up on the story, which was the link being texted to Brenner’s client, and because Brenner has been on vacation in Alaska, he had never heard about a ring being found.
“It was just the perfect storm, in a good way,” said Brenner.
“It gives us a very warm feeling when we had all that disappointment when we lost it,” Sue added. “The whole thing is just amazing and surreal and just one of those feel-good news stories.”
Vail Mountain ski resort is now offering the happy couple a free night’s stay when they come to retrieve the lucky gold band. And although Brenner has already replaced the once lost wedding ring, Sue says, “It will be a keepsake and we’ll pass it down to our kids.”