Lakeland couple's engagement ring found more than 20 years after it was flushed down the toilet

There's no better feeling than finding something you've lost — especially if it's been missing for two decades. A Lakeland couple who said they flushed their engagement ring down the toilet more than 20 years ago figured it was gone forever. 

To their surprise, the ring was found this week. 

Shaina Day couldn't believe her eyes when she was unwrapping gifts on Christmas morning. One of them was her engagement ring, which was last seen more than 20 years ago. 

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"I'd taken my ring off. It was sitting on the counter, so when I sopped up the water, I guess I didn't pay attention very well snagged my ring in the process and tossed it in the toilet and flushed it," Shaina said.

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At the time, she and her now husband of 20 years Nick Day had just gotten engaged months earlier and were living at his parents house in Lakeland.

"I climbed down into the septic tank with a hose that I had to suck up everything that was down there, and I pumped it through a hose over a screen, a window screen into a 55 gallon drum," Shaina said.

All that effort and no ring to show for it – until last week when Nick's parents replaced their toilet.

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"The plumber unhooked it from the ground and then just dumped it over in the tub to get the excess water out, so when he took it out it didn't drip through the house and when he did the ring came out," Nick said.

Nick's parents couldn't believe that after all these years, it had been sitting in a toilet pipe. Come Christmas morning, they wrapped it up in a miniature ceramic toilet and gifted it back to them.

"That just is absolutely amazing that it's just been sitting there, because we had just thought it was gone. It was never coming back. It's hard to believe," Shaina said.

The ring was broken, but the diamond was still intact. After a cleaning, it's still shining just as bright as was when Nick proposed more than 20 years ago and now more meaningful than ever.

"To know that everyone cared enough about it and thought it was so cool that they didn't tell us it was an actual genuine surprise. It was. It brought tears to both our eyes," Nick said.