Phillip Bozzelli said when he saw a bowling ball-size object buried in the sand on Folly Beach, he knew immediately it was a cannonball.

"I knew exactly what it was," the 33-year-old West Ashley resident said. "I’ve always wanted to find one, so I was really stoked about it."

Bozzelli said he was walking in the rain on the north end of the island, looking for driftwood for his aquarium at about 2 p.m. Monday when he found it. He dislodged the old shell from the eight or nine inches of sand it was buried in, took a few pictures and then called the police. 

Folly Beach Public Safety came to the scene, the beach was cleared and an explosive ordnance disposal team from Charleston was called, Bozzelli said. A dispatcher with Folly Beach Public Safety confirmed his story.

Bozzelli said officers told him the cannonball would be exploded later. He left the beach at about 2:30 p.m. 

Bozzelli noted the coordinates of the place where he found the cannonball. He said there were people nearby when he found it, but the spot was not easily accessible and it didn't look like anyone else had disturbed it before.

Workers dug up a cannonball near the College of Charleston in late February. It was destroyed by Joint Base Charleston's 628th Civil Engineer Squadron explosive ordnance disposal team soon after. All unearthed shells rightfully belong to the military and should be considered dangerous.

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Reach Mary Katherine Wildeman at 843-937-5594. Follow her on Twitter @mkwildeman.

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