BY ANGELJEAN CHIARAMIDA
---- — NEWBURY — A week of worrying and heartache has come to a happy conclusion for Jessica Stevens, the woman who lost her engagement ring in the middle of last Thursday’s snowstorm.
Stevens lost her diamond on the night of Jan. 2 after it fell unnoticed from her key ring, where she thought she had put it for temporary safe keeping. She didn’t realize the gem was missing until she arrived at work at Newburyport’s 24-hour CVS on Pond Street.
Scouring the CVS parking lot that night with the help of concerned customers, Stevens couldn’t find the pretty, heart-shaped solitaire given to her on Halloween by her fiance, Chris Nickerson. For days afterward, she looked everywhere, she said, the parking lot, her house, the car, her purse; she even appealed to the public for help finding her ring through a story in the Daily News. But, she continued to come up empty-handed.
Then, she and Nickerson got the idea on Wednesday to rent a metal detector from Kelly’s True Value in Newburyport.
”When I went in, the woman there said she’d read the story in The Daily News and she was hoping we’d find my ring,” Stevens said. “Chris and I went to CVS and started looking in the parking lot and we got a lot of hits. But they turned out to be small pieces of things in the snow, like aluminum foil.”
That’s when the couple decided to head over to Stevens’ brother’s house in Salisbury, because that’s where she was when she left for work.
”Chris took two steps off the driveway and there is was, sitting right on top of the snow,” Steven said. “It must have fallen off my key ring when I brushed the snow off my car before I left for work.”
Stevens figures the ring dropped in the driveway and her brother unwittingly shoveled it onto the snowbank. She’s grateful to her brother, her fiance and everyone who helped her look, as well as those who invested in prayers on her behalf to St. Anthony of Padua, the patron saint of lost things.
”Lots of people were wishing me luck and a few offered prayers to St. Anthony,” Stevens said. “I said quite a few myself. I kept talking to him every day. I guess he was listening. I’m very grateful.”
Stevens said she isn’t going to tempt fate again. She’ll refrain from taking her ring off every night when she gets into bed and placing it on the key ring.
”No, I’ve learned my lesson,” she said. “The ring is staying on my finger.”