The “Lost” Wedding Ring

On the face of it, a recent soft news piece gives an account of a maladroit marriage proposal and a lost engagement ring. After dating his girlfriend Stacey Scanlon for more than a year, Matt Cawley planned to propose to her this past Monday. His proposal was set to occur on a jetty at Bass River Beach, but things fell apart when the $9000 diamond ring he planned to give her was lost just before he proposed. Several hours of searching turned up nothing, and the dejected couple headed home empty-ring-fingered.

That’s certainly an unfortunate story. But what exactly happened? According to Cawley, he’d tied the ring to a sand dollar and left it on the beach. Shortly after, on an early morning walk, he pointed the sand dollar out to Scanlon. When she picked it up, the ring’s weight pulled the knot apart and the ring fell into the rocks, never to be seen again. Or seen at all, actually.

Scanlon said she wasn’t able to catch a glimpse of the ring, which was set with a diamond passed down from a relative of Cawley’s, before it slid down through the jetty.

So a man wishes to marry his girlfriend, but the engagement ring is sadly lost just before his proposal. In fact, the girlfriend never even sees the ring before it’s swept into the sea. Instead of a tale of tragedy, this sounds more like a clever man hoodwinking his girlfriend. To prudent spenders everywhere, this may well be worthy of applause. After all, going into debt by spending thousands of dollars on an overpriced hunk of rock is a bad way to begin a marriage. Of course, the benefits to the marriage obtained by avoiding debt are probably cancelled out if you get them by starting your new life together with a massive lie.

It’s possible there’s even more going on here. The story indicates the diamond was passed down from a relative, so there’s no paper trail on this ring. Further, upon giving up after hours of searching, Cawley’s cousin just happened to drive by in time to picked up the couple. But the most damning piece of evidence, indicating that perhaps this is a massive fraud, wherein an entire family conspires against both an unsuspecting girlfriend and an industry which seeks to indemnify against loss?

Only later did the couple find out that, unbeknownst to them, Cawley’s mother had insured the ring in full.

How convenient.