A family was forced to call in a metal detectorist after they forgot where they buried their mum-in-law’s ASHES – in a tub of VANISH.
Lilian Jackson was cremated and her remains interred in the back garden of son David and his wife Penelope.
They placed her ashes in an urn which they put into a plastic tub of Vanish stain remover.
But years later the couple resigned their yard – including building a patio.
They then realised they didn’t know where Lilian was buried and sent an SOS to a local metal detector club.
They posted a message to them which read: “Metal canister with mother-in-law in it, was under a rose seem to have lost her, not a wind up!!! Help”.
Morley Howard, a member of the Somerset Artefact Seekers metal detecting group,
went to help find her.
Stunned Morley said he is more used to receiving requests to find missing wedding rings, car keys and the odd tractor part.
”They told me they’d put her in a tub of Vanish and she’s literally vanished.
“She was laughing about it. Not knowing these people I didn’t really know how to react.”
Morley says despite digging several holes in the garden, the couple were unable to find her.
Unsure quite what to expect, he turned up turned up at their home with his XP Deus Metal Detector.
He said: “After about five or ten minutes of searching the flower beds I managed to locate the ashes under the patio believe it or not – right at the edge.
“It was definitely the most unusual recovery mission I’ve ever been out on. They were happy to get her back.
”And the husband whose mother it was brought out a photograph of her and asked to have a photograph with us.”
Penelope, of Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset, added: “He was great.
”He quickly found the canister and we’re now planning to re-inter the ashes and keep a very careful note of the location.”
Morley, whose 14-year-old son suffers from Cystic Fibrosis, said he did not ask the couple for payment and asked them instead to donate to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.