Wedding ring

Local hero to the rescue after losing alliance

LOCAL HERO: Stephen MacLeod finds ring on Garry’s beach after searching for an hour with his metal detector

In August, the Edinburgh-based stair designer and old college buddies traveled to stay with another of their peer group, Duncan Chalmers, who set up an architecture firm on the island.

After a usual boys night out on Saturday morning, they decided to go swimming at Garry Beach in Tolsta. It wasn’t until after that Daryll found out that he had lost his precious wedding ring.

And it was no ordinary alliance for that. It had been handmade by his wife for two years, Carey, and was totally unique and irreplaceable.

Daryll and his friends went out in the pouring rain to search but, unsurprisingly, it didn’t help. He had to leave the next day.

He made a desperate appeal on social media and was “amazed at the response he received from wonderful and kind locals who were ready to come out and look for him.” A local detector, Stephen MacLeod, was recommended.

Carey resumes the story: “The first person came out and unfortunately found nothing. At this point, I was trying to convince Daryll that he shouldn’t have any hope because it was so unlikely to happen.

“But at the end of the week the second person came out and on Friday afternoon, as Daryll finished his work, he received a picture of this local hero standing on the beach with his wedding ring!”

That “local hero” was Detector Stephen MacLeod.

“Needless to say, Daryll was over the moon and the man who discovered him was ecstatic as well,” Carey said.

“He and Daryll have now become quick friends on WhatsApp, having never met in person, and have arranged for a drink on Daryll’s next visit to the island.”

Carey, who works with people with disabilities and autism, continued, “The story then had a rather fortuitous conclusion to the ring that came back to us on our second wedding anniversary, September 28.

“It’s because, not wanting to risk sending him back in the mail, he came back through friends.

“After leaving him in Duncan, Duncan’s parents picked him up during their visit to the island and brought him back to Renfrew where they live.

“Then Duncan’s brother Ruairidh drove him on the last leg of the journey back to Edinburgh, where he delivered him to our house and, coincidentally, it was our anniversary. “

Stephen, a painter and decorator from Arnol, said he was approached by the owner of Store 67 in Stornoway – an outdoor merchandise retailer Daryll first turned to for help – to see if he would be ready to go out with his metal detector.

“I had done work for Store 67, so I thought this was going to give it a try,” Stephen said.

“I went out with my friend Angus MacInnes. We’ve been there for about an hour. To be honest I wasn’t sure if the tide would have swept it away, but as soon as I got a signal I knew it was gold. And it was there. It was just very, very lucky.

Stephen and Daryll are now looking forward to meeting over a few beers in Stornoway soon. Maybe they’ll skip a swim at Garry Beach, though.

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