Lower Merion, Pa. (WTXF) - You’ve heard the expression one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Well, what if the treasure is mixed in with the trash. That was the scene that played out in Lower Merion Thursday when expensive rings were accidentally dumped into a mountain of garbage.
Lower Merion's Refuse and Recycling operation is not technically a 'lost and found' but a frantic resident arrived there Thursday afternoon and changed all that.
Rachel Spiegel says she had taken off her engagement ring and diamond wedding band while making chicken soup. When she later went to look for them: "They were not on the counter, they weren't in the trash bag and I realized trash had already come," she said.
The rings had been picked up by the a trash compactor truck and taken away—mixed with other garbage, dumped into a second compactor and shoved into an 18-wheeler .
The man in charge—they call him Joe "Press"—agreed to dump the trailer and conduct a search.
"It was a total of about 20,000 pounds," he said.
For more than two hours, workers dug through the garbage in search of Rachel's rings, looking first for discarded mail with addresses that signaled they were in the right neighborhood.
"She was incredible. She dove right in, she was throwing bags, pulling bags open to try to find the address that we needed."
Finally, Joe tossed Rachel a white bag with some chicken bones inside.
"And it was the last bag, literally, that we were gonna check for the night and I saw it was my trash—dumped it out and it just fell on the ground," Rachel said.