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Local News

Wedding Band Lost in Ocean Two Years Ago Resurfaces on Ellwood Beach

Jen Birchim of Goleta tracks down the owner through Facebook after finding the ring while beachcombing near her home

"My love, my life, my lobster."

Those were the words gleaming from inside a gold wedding band that Jen Birchim held in her hand two Saturdays ago while standing on the beach near her home in Ellwood.

Birchim was standing in the sand when she found the ring, and had been taking advantage of the low tide to beachcomb with three of her four children, searching the sand for beach glass, heart stones and shells, and small treasures.

After big storms hit the beaches earlier this year, much of the area's sand had been pushed away, so the Birchims were exploring rock formations and tide pools.

That's when she saw what looked like a bottle cap.

It turned out not to be a piece of trash, but a wedding ring with a strange inscription.

It wasn't the first time the Birchims had found a ring. While diving at Lake Tahoe, her husband found a platinum ring in the sand under the surface.

With this ring, Birchim decided to take a picture when she returned home and post it with a short message on her Facebook page.

"Let's see if we can find the owner of this wedding band I found today at Ellwood beach in the super low tide," she wrote. "There is an inscription on the inside — "my love, my life, my lobster" … Maybe a lobster fisherman? Pass it along friends! Let's stoke someone out and return it!"

Jen Birchim of Goleta found this ring at Ellwood Beach, and tracked down the owner through her Facebook page.

The post went viral, and two days later "it had 1,100 shares," she told Noozhawk.

Several days later, she was contacted by Sara Lindsay, a Ventura teacher, who had been shown the post that week.

Lindsay found out when a substitute teacher mentioned a post that had gone viral on Facebook.

"She said 'the ring has a really odd description,'" Lindsay recalled. "She read it to me aloud, and I said, 'That's my husband's ring. ... If she hadn't been working that day, I don't know if we would have found it."

The ring had been lost in June 2012, while the Lindsays were visiting the beach with a Bible study group.

"The guys were playing football, and my husband jumped into the ocean to get the ball, and that's when he lost the ring," she said. 

He didn't notice it had slipped off until later after the couple had left the area.

"I was pretty upset," she said. "He loses a lot of things. ... The ring was in the ocean. We just figured it was gone."

Her husband, Greg, got a $20 sterling-silver ring from Amazon as a replacement, and the couple had accepted that the ring was lost forever until the post popped up.

When she told her husband the news, he was "very doubtful," Lindsay said. "He's still pretty shocked."

Last Saturday, the couple drove from their home in Ojai on Saturday to meet Birchim and retrieve the ring.

Birchim walked with them out to the bluffs, and the trio discovered that where Birchim had discovered the ring was relatively close to where Greg remembered losing it.

The white gold band was a bit faded from the time spent in the salt water and sand, but Lindsay said she thinks it adds to the character of the ring.

The couple began dating 10 years ago, and Lindsay said the inscription is a reference to the television show Friends, in which two major characters of the show profess that they'll be together for life.

Lindsay has had people call telling her they've seen her story pop up on CNN, the Today show and other television outlets.

"It's pretty exciting," she said. "We've had people come up to us and say, 'Oh my gosh, you're the lobster ring people.'"

The ring had more than 20,000 shares by this week, and Birchim said the event "really just showed the power of social media in a positive way.

"They're super happy. ... It was a fun happy ending."

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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