Christmas Tree Farmer Finds Wedding Band Lost 15 Years Ago and Returns It to Owner: 'It Was A Miracle'

Engraved on the inside of the ring were the words, "To David, Love Nancy" followed by their anniversary, July 20, 1974.

It's a Christmas miracle for a New Jersey man who has been was reunited with the wedding band he lost at a tree farm 15 years ago — months after his wife passed away.

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"It was kind of like a miracle," David Penner, 68, told "I'm happy to have it back at this time. It's like a piece of my wife back."

Nancy Penner of Great Meadows, the other name engraved in the ring, passed away in September. She was 67.

John Wyckoff, of Wyckoff's Tree Farm in Belvedere, told he was planting Christmas trees in April from his tractor when he looked down and spotted something shiny in the dirt. He said the sight was not out of the ordinary since he's found items on his farm like Indian arrow heads, broken sunglasses and kids' toys.

"I reached down, and came up with a handful of dirt," he said. "When I sifted through it, I found a man's wedding band. I couldn't believe what I found."

Engraved on the inside were the words, "To David, Love Nancy" followed by their wedding anniversary, July 20, 1974.

Knowing someone would want it back, Wyckoff said he tried to look for the owner himself, but to no avail.

Seven months later, visited the farm for a story, when Wyckoff remembered the wedding band, and hoped he would be able to track down the owner with the help a bigger audience.

Less than a week later, Penner showed up at the farm.

He told Wyckoff it must have been 15 years since he lost the ring at his farm. He remembered looking for a tree with his wife, and two teenage sons. 

"We were looking for a Christmas tree 15-something years ago," Penner recalled to "It was a cold day, and I cut the tree down. I wasn't wearing gloves, and my hands were pretty cold, probably numb. I probably flung my hand down and my ring came off my finger." 

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Wyckoff said the pair chatted and Penner was able to relay the description and the date on the band. He also backed up his story by providing Wyckoff with his marriage certificate.

And with that, Wyckoff knew he had found the right guy.

"It was an emotional moment. He had a tear in his eye because Nancy passed away this September," Wyckoff said. They were married for 42 years. "He never replaced it. He felt it was getting something back."

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