Last month, Michele and Chad King hosted their three grandchildren from Atlanta for a week of stay-at-home fun at their home on Boone Lake in Johnson City—and inadvertently lost a prized possession while at play.
Michele and grandson Declan were playing soccer with an inexpensive ball in their yard when one of his shots sent it plummeting down the hill and into the lake. In spite of its low level at the moment, Boone Lake is still very deep at the Kings’ home, and it was impossible to retrieve the ball.
Not wanting to interrupt their fun, Michele said, “Wait…I know where your dad’s old soccer ball is…I’ll go get it.” She quickly returned with a “trophy” high school ball that had belonged to her son, Josh, who is now Declan’s dad. The ball was a souvenir of his senior year at Providence Academy, 2003, and showed his name along with his soccer team’s final season win/loss tally.
But, in short order, another random kick sent this ball off the yard edge and down into the lake. Two balls were now gone, but the second was a true loss. Michele and the kids were heartbroken.
That was on Saturday, May 23. On Monday, May 25, their family was dining on the deck when their granddaughter, Bailey, spied something white bobbing in the water in the middle of the lake. “I see the ball!” she shouted. Michele and Chad then took their boat out for quick look but couldn’t find a ball anywhere. They gave it up as a complete loss.
On Saturday, June 6, Michele went to the street to get her mail and was stunned to see Josh’s soccer ball sitting by her mailbox. Someone had found the ball and then had taken the clues from the writing on the ball to find out where it belonged. There was no note attached.
“We were speechless!” Michele said. “We have no idea who found the ball and went through all the research to return it to us.”
She made a Facetime call to her grandchildren, back in Atlanta, to show them the returned ball, and they erupted in cheers.
Michele also discovered, after examining the ball more closely, that in his final season flurry, Josh had managed to grab only one teammate’s signature—belonging to Ryan Lindsay, Josh’s close friend, who had lost a battle with cancer last fall. The ball had even more significance than Michele had originally thought.
“Whoever found this will forever have our gratitude,” Michele said. “We really feel that the Lord used that person to redeem this treasure for us. What a joyful bit of good news after weeks of discouragement!”
If you were the person…or know the person…who retrieved the Kings’ ball, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Kings would like to send their personal thanks