A romantic American couple were thrilled to return to Ireland and find a pendant buried in Killarney – exactly where they left it 26 years ago!
Bill and Laurie McGrath visited Ireland as part of a European adventure with friends in 1990.
The couple were dating at the time and Bill gave Laurie a gold half-heart necklace with the words ‘best friends’. He told her to bury the pendant and that one day they would return and dig it up.
They buried it with a love note that Bill had written. They got married a year later.
Irish-American Bill said: “Let me give her something we could still look forward to when we go back.
“You break it in half,’ I said. ‘You wear one half and bury the other half in Ireland and we’ll go dig it up someday.”
Laurie first planned to bury the pendant in Blarney Castle, but was unable to do so due to gardening work. Her second choice was the Cliffs of Moher. However, that was no good because of erosion.
Eventually the couple buried the jewellery in a cemetery in Castletownroche, Co Cork. It was buried in a box and a plastic bag around four inches underground. They then covered the spot with a rock.
True to his word, Bill returned to Ireland with Laurie as they celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary.
They set about finding the missing piece of the pendant that they had left behind. They used old photographs and GPS and also had help from local librarians in Cork,
Unfortunately when they found the spot, the note was disintegrated. However, the pendant was still in perfect condition.
Laurie said: “There it was as shiny as could be. We just cried and said, ‘I can’t believe this. This is amazing.’”
“We love each other like crazy, so it’s just nice that we found it. We’re never apart.
“We’re just looking forward to growing old together.”
Bill added: “Here it is. Twenty-six years. That’s true love. We just do stuff for each other, and we love each other.”
The other half is back home in Old Lyme, Connecticut and the couple can’t wait to reunite the two pieces of the pendant as a symbol of their young love.
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling