The SIM card in the Blackberry Bold series phones from Verizon (models 9650 & 9930) are only for use in international travel. Assuming your wife used her Bold exclusively on the Verizon network here in the USA, that SIM card would not contain any contact info or other data.
I always stored the SIM card in my Bold so that it would not get misplaced (in case I traveled overseas) but I recommend that you face the contacts outward so that the phone does not constantly search the SIM card for information that doesn't exist (and waste battery power).
Thank you! So I guess her next step will be to try the Vzw Backup Assistant to restore her contacts (I saw today that there is BB desktop software available, but we're too late for that).
I have all my contacts synced with my Gmail account. All I had to do when I got a new device was to set my Gmail account up on that device and they synced to the phone. I realize it my be too late for you now, but something to think about with your new device.
Z10STL100-4/10.1.0.2151 on Verizon Wireless