ROGERS PARK — A Rogers Park resident who sought the public's help after part of their unique, custom-made wedding band went missing in January said a string of luck and a good Samaritan led to the ring's return.
"There's so much luck in this story," Mugsie Pike of Rogers Park, who uses they/them pronouns, told DNAinfo.
Two months ago, Pike was out running errands on the "L" between the Morse Red Line stop and the Dempster stop in Evanston when the ring slipped off their hand.
The ring is part of a custom-made, two-piece set of bands — an engagement ring and a wedding ring — made from remnants of jewelry belonging to friends and family.
By the time Pike realized it was gone, they weren't sure where in the timeline of that day it had come off.
Pike set up a special phone number and email address, shared the story with local reporters and pasted fliers around the Far North Side — but never believed the beloved band would be seen again.
Pike's fiancée advised, "I know it's not logical, but wishful thinking is hard to resist."
Unbeknownst to Pike, the ring would soon be found by an Evanston woman out walking her dog.
The woman saw it lying on the sidewalk along Pike's errand route that day, and Pike said it was the woman's keen eye for jewelry that compelled her to pick it up and take it home — jewelry was something the woman had taken an interest in growing up because her grandparents owned a jewelry shop.
The woman took the piece home to examine it further, but later forgot about it.
It wasn't until she saw one of Pike's fliers with a clear and detailed picture of the ring that the woman put the two together. She called the ring's hotline and left Pike a message.
"I'm elated — I cried when I got her first voicemail and almost couldn't believe it," Pike said. "I kept expecting it to be the wrong ring or something until she actually came in and it was back on my hand."
Though Pike's fiancée kept the faith that it might one day be returned, Pike said after only a few days, hope grew slim.
This story is one of luck, Pike said.
Not just in that the ring was found and returned, but that Pike didn't order a new one or disconnect the phone number set up for the search — which Pike meant to do, but hadn't yet.
Pike had also made an appointment with a goldsmith, but it was canceled when their fiancée got sick.
It was also the poster's clear picture that helped the woman match the two rings up, Pike said, another stroke of luck born out of an engagement photo shoot gone wrong — resulting in just one usable picture, the one of the ring.
On Sunday, Pike's ring was returned to her at the bar where Pike works.
The good Samaritan refused the $1,000 reward Pike had offered in her original plea, so Pike made the woman a gift basket and told her to stop into her bar any time for a drink.
Once on the verge of losing all hope, Pike said the ring's return has instead reminded them of the good in people.
"That especially makes me feel like the world has good people in it," Pike said. "This isn't someone who was being mercenary or anything like that, just a genuinely kind person."