Toilet in german theater munichImage via WikipediaLast year I wrote about the extraordinary effort required to retrieve a $70,000 ring which was accidentally flushed down a US restaurant toilet. Apparently losing expensive rings that way happens more often than I thought. And the lengths people will go through to get them back...

Joan Spiers, a 67 year old English woman just recently got back her valuable certified diamond antique gold ring two years after she lost it down a hotel toilet. She was very distraught at the time. It was not just the cost but the sentimental value as the ring was given to her by her late husband.

After she lost the ring, a waste firm was hired. They emptied the septic tank filtering through 12,000 gallons of sewage without success. They then inserted a camera inside to see if the ring was lodged somewhere. When that failed, the company even sent a worker in equipped with a metal detector. Still no ring.

They had emptied the contents of the tank via a sewage works at a Thames Water site. More than two years later, the same waste firm was hired to clear out a channel at that sewage works. It was then that the ring was miraculously found by one very honest worker. When the firm's manager saw the ring, he immediately recognized it as the ring lost by Joan Spiers. He had seen a photo of it back then.

The ring had lost two of its smaller diamonds but was otherwise okay. After a good professional cleaning, the ring is in a much safer place now and unlikely to be flushed down a toilet again!


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