After a couple stumbled across a strange sight while walking the beach, the blue and yellow surfboard became like a message in a bottle—and they had to know its origins.
It all started when Lee Brogan had been “wiped out” by a massive wave while surfing off the Yorkshire coast in England last year and watched in agony as his surfboard disappeared into the ocean.
He had given up hope of ever being reunited with his 10-year-old board but luckily a young couple found it—some 400 miles away.
Stephanie Riise, 22, and Jake Anderson, 23, were hiking on the Shetland Islands off the coast of Scotland when they spotted the nine-foot board and decided to investigate further.
The Walden board, which costs between £800 and £1,200, was marooned off shore on some gravel but was completely intact.
“Our interest was piqued at that point and we were just wondering where it had come from, how far it had travelled, who lost it, what story was behind it,” said Stephanie, from Shetland.
The inquisitive pair took to Facebook on the day of the discovery to see if anyone could trace the owner as they wanted to know the story behind the board. She posted about her find on the Shetland Seashore Discoveries Facebook page and the community quickly put on their detective hats.
Just a day later, they were put in touch with Lee who couldn’t believe they had found his beloved board which had been lost in the waves in Runswick Bay in Scarborough, England.
“We were so surprised by how quickly it all came about, we didn’t think we’d ever find the owner in all honesty. We were so pleased he had gotten in touch.”
She said they quizzed Lee to make sure he was indeed the owner, but after he provided photo evidence and explained how he’d fallen off the board, they were convinced.
The kind couple not only solved the mystery, they got a friend to deliver the board to his home in a van and said they were just tickled to have been able to help. And, they signed the board with a message—not needing any bottle to preserve the 400-mile synchronicity of fellowship.
“Knowing (now) where it had come from, it’s even more impressive that it was completely intact.”
“It’s just been fun to have been able to do something nice for someone during lockdown as everything’s been quite doom and gloom.”