Los Angeles firefighters found a small ring box in front of a home destroyed by the Getty Fire, which ripped through Southern California late last month. It appeared to be the homeowner's only remaining possession after the fire — and firefighters soon learned it was also the sole surviving heirloom from an earlier fire, which occurred in 1961.
The L.A. firefighters who found the gem knew the small diamond ring inside the yellow box must be special to someone. So they set out on a mission to find the rightful owner.
The house it was found near was the only home destroyed on that part of the street, the Los Angeles Fire Department wrote on Facebook. When residents were able to return to their homes, the firefighters went back to the neighborhood, too, hoping to find the homeowner.
"They found her," the department wrote on Facebook. The woman who lived in the house said the ring belonged to her mother, who lived in the same place when an earlier fire devastated the neighborhood back in 1961.
That year, the Bel Air Fire swept through the area, destroying 484 homes, according to the department. "This past week, some of those same (rebuilt) homes were again destroyed in the [Getty Fire]," the department explained.
Decades ago, the ring was the only thing to survive the fire — and here it was, surviving again. The woman's mother, who lived through the 1961 Bel Air Fire, was also in the house when the Getty Fire forced evacuations this October.
"The resident was speechless and beyond happy to have the ring back," the department wrote. "Among the stories of heartbreak and devastation, these moments lighten our hearts." The department called this story "unbelievable."