‘Dream team’ metal detectors find ring

A local father and son came to the rescue of a distraught bride-to-be who lost her engagement ring on Downhill beach.

Tuesday, 27th July 2021, 2:31 pm

Andy and Ryan McCloy came to the rescue after Beth Donnelly took to social media in a desperate attempt to find her ring.

Beth’s Facebook appeal was shared more than 3,000 times and was eventually seen by Andy and Ryan.

Speaking to BBC Radio Ulster, Beth said: “We went down to the beach and I took off my earrings, watch and then the ring and set it down on a towel.

“I went to put the items in the car for safe keeping, but I must have dropped the engagement ring on the way to the car without realising.

“It was only when we went to a cafe afterwards did we realise it was missing.”

Beth and fiance Ryan stayed on the beach all evening, searching through the sand in a desperate attempt to find the ring.

Beth said: “I felt so empty, Ryan and my mum, who lives in America, helped design the ring - it meant everything to me as it was my connection to home.”

The next day, the couple rented a metal detector and began scouring the area once again. They were assisted by other helpers who came along after spotting the plea online.

“One lady with a rake showed up and began raking the sand to help bring it to surface,” Beth said.

“We were just standing there chatting, and Ryan McCloy was sort of swaying his metal detector when we just heard the smallest of beeps,” Beth said.

“Initially we dismissed it, thinking it was probably just a can lid, but then Ryan started digging and digging and after dislodging about a foot of sand we eventually saw the silver band from the ring. It really was like finding a needle in a haystack - it was incredible.”

Metal detectorist Ryan told BBC Radio Ulster that the moment Beth’s ring emerged from the sand “took my breath away”.

“I was swinging literally a couple of steps from where we were standing talking and I got the faintest wee beep,” he said.

“I went down to pick it up and as I lifted the back of it I saw the diamond just appearing out of the sand. I was amazed,” he said.

Beth later posted an update on social media thanking the “father and son dream team” for their help.