Page last updated at 10:14 GMT, Thursday, 20 August 2009 11:14 UK

New Zealand has new Lord of Ring

Wellington Harbour, New Zealand
Diving in Wellington Harbour in midwinter takes commitment

A New Zealand man who promised his wife he would find his wedding ring after it fell into the capital's harbour has been successful - 16 months later.

Ecologist Aleki Taumoepeau was working in Wellington harbour last year when the ring went into just over three metres (10 feet) of water.

He threw an anchor in to mark the spot, insisting he would find it.

Friends now call him Lord of the Ring, in a play on the Tolkien novel, the film of which was made in New Zealand.

"It flew off into the air and everyone on the boat was looking at it and said it was like a scene from "Lord of the Rings" in slow motion," Rachel Taumoepeau told the Dominion Post newspaper.

The couple had been married just three months when the ring took its dive.

An initial search three months after the loss failed, but Mr Taumoepeau was determined. He returned again recently for another dive, risking chilly midwinter temperatures.

"I was getting cold and tired so I said to God it would be really good to find the ring about now," he said, also using new global positioning co-ordinates.

He spotted the anchor - with the ring lying just inches away.

"I couldn't believe that I could see the ring so perfectly," he said. "The whole top surface of the ring was glowing."

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