Homeless Vet Returns Cash-Filled Wallet To Owner

If you ever lose a wallet stocked with cash but no identification, you can probably forget about ever reuniting with it. But a homeless 49-year-old Navy vet in Boston made the near-impossible happen for the bike messenger who lost the precious cargo.

The Boston Globe reports the man who found the wallet took it to police, who identified the owner through a receipt left inside.

The virtuous finder told the Globe he considered pocketing the cash and forgetting about being a hero.

“I counted the money and said, ‘Wow, I could probably get three nice presents with this,’ ” he said (the man has three children in another state). “But maybe it was some student’s Christmas gift money. I just kept thinking of the meaning of Christmas.”

If you’ve ever found a lost valuable, what did you do with it?

Man in need finds wallet and moral compass [Boston Globe]

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. larsdad says:

    Found a wallet in a shopping cart in the Costco parking lot, had close to $1000 in it…took it to the customer service folks and waited for the owner to come get it. I wanted to make sure she got all the cash back…the look of relief on her face was a great reward!!!

    • Bremma says:

      I found a wallet once, and didn’t even think to look for cash. I saw it had a student ID in it and turned it into my boss for the job I was reporting to, being a university job. She looked over the wallet and found about $100 in it. I think we eventually found him and got him back his wallet and cash.

    • Scurvythepirate says:

      If this was my story it would have went like this cause I am a pirate:

      “Found a wallet in a shopping cart in the Costco parking lot, had close to $50 in it…”

    • TasteyCat says:

      Anybody who carries $1000 in cash probably deserves to lose it.

  2. makreljohnson says:

    *Almost* makes me like humans again… but then I remember this is the super-rare exception.

    Still, these are the kind people you should put effort into looking after- those with good character. Goes a long way.

  3. Blueskylaw says:

    I wish large corporations would take a cue from this man’s actions.

  4. earthprince says:

    Found a Moleskin notebook at the DMV once. The first page has two lines for contact info in case its lost, and a reward offered. The person wrote in a cell number and $50. I texted saying I was there, and could mail it wherever he wanted (it was extensively used with very business-like information, so I figured it was needed.)

    He texts back saying he’ll pick it up, he comes before I get called in and thanks me. No reward offered, but I also didn’t ask. Where’s my nobel peace prize?

  5. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    Depends on where I found it. If I find $20 in the self checkout at the supermarket, I give it to the clerk. The $20 bill and gold chain I literally found on the side of the road near a empty field? The chain I kept it for about 2 years, and eventually sold it after $70 fell out of my pocket at the flea market. The $20 is still in my CamelBak, in case I need it while I’m out wearing it, and also as a built in reward should I lose it(there is a note saying to keep the cash and return the CamelBak).

  6. Cicadymn says:

    I vote homeless people shouldn’t buy their children Christmas presents, even if the kids are in another state and living comfortably.

    Homeless people need to use every bit of money to work on their homeless situation, not waste the money on meaningless gifts, or drugs/alcohol as so many do.

    • quijote says:

      Being able to give is a really valuable thing for people–even for people with nothing. The money this guy would have spent on gifts for his kids was not going to bring him out of his situation, and being able to give something to his kids, who he doesn’t get to see, on Christmas is probably worth it. I don’t have kids, but I can imagine that the feeling of not being able to give your kids anything must be very painful.

    • Kitten Mittens says:

      Wow. I could read this article 1,000 times and never muster up with this level of condescension.

      • mythago says:

        That’s because you’re trying to be a decent human being, instead of trying to wave your Internet Cynic Cred.

    • Arcaeris says:

      This might amaze you, but many homeless people actually enjoy being homeless and free from “the man.” If this was the case here, he would never in a million years have used the money to “work on [his] homeless situation.”

      The situation he is in is the one he desires. This isn’t true for every homeless, but certainly many of the ones I’ve talked to.

    • JulesNoctambule says:

      You don’t really comprehend the complexity of a ‘homeless situation’, do you?

    • amgriffin says:

      Unless you have ever been the recipient of charity you can’t imagine how humiliating it is. To be able to give something of some value to someone, when before you have always been the recipient, is amazingly healing. I would never deny anyone the joy and the right of giving.

    • theduckay says:

      And I vote that you need to work on your ignorance situation.

  7. Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

    I’d like to think that most people are good and would return valuables. Over the years, I’ve found two wallets and both times, I just took them to the police w/out even opening them.

    I’ve been on the other side too. About 10 years ago, when a close relative passed away, I frantically went to an ATM to take out enough cash for a long trip. I accidentally left my card in the machine when I left. About two hours later, I got a message from a police officer that somebody found my card and dropped it off at their sub-station (Oakland substation in Pittsburgh). I didn’t realize it was missing, let alone that somebody found it and returned it.

    I think most people would do the right thing but all it takes is one SOB to do something nasty and it can really sour one’s outlook. When I was a kid, back when we left cars unlocked and windows down in the summer, if you saw a parked car with its headlights on, you’d open the door and turn them off out of courtesy. Unfortunately, I don’t think the same action would fly today.

  8. Grabraham says:

    Several years ago I saw a woman’s wallet in the middle of a busy state highway in front of a strip mall. I pulled over, dodged traffic and retrieved it. I brought it in to the gas station I worked at and looked up the womans name from her license and told her she could stop in and pick it up at any point. She grumped at me because I told her I could not bring it to her I was at work and she said she would come get it. I closed it up and locked it under the counter without even looking to see what was there for cash etc. When she got there she counted the $260 in cash that was in there and then accused me of taking one of her credit cards. I explained that I did not even look past her drivers license and offered to call the police for her if she wanted to file a report. She left in a huff. I

    • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

      Logic would say you wouldn’t take the credit card AND return the wallet with the cash intact.

    • Chmeeee says:

      You’re a better person than I am. If I called somebody in a situation like that and the first thing they did was complain to me, that thing would go straight into the trash.

  9. Etoiles says:

    I’ve never found a lost wallet. I did once find a credit card lying on the sidewalk; I called the 800 number on the back and the CC company did. not. understand. what I was trying to tell them.

    “I found John Smith’s Mastercard lying in the road.”

    “Are you Mr. Smith?”

    “No, I’m a stranger, I found this credit card in the street and I’m telling you you should probably let the account-holder know…”

    “Ah, Ms. Smith, you’re reporting your card lost?”

    “What? No. I’m not Ms. Smith, and I’m telling you I FOUND a card that Mr. Smith lost…”

    I don’t know if they ever did understand me, alas.

    Everything else I’ve found has been cash $20 or under, in places where there’s really no figuring out who lost it (busy women’s rooms, parking lots, sidewalks with no people around). So if it’s $20 from the parking lot, I keep it.

    • Michaela says:

      I found a debit card on the sidewalk once. I plugged the name into facebook, found the person, and messaged them about the card. After she accurately described the card (bank, name on card, address on card), I met up with her at a library and exchanged it. No reward. No thank you.

      • theduckay says:

        no thank you?? How could someone not say thank you in that situation? Boggles my mind. I mean I say thank you when someone holds the door open for me, let alone finds my missing debit card.

      • Pax says:

        Yeesh, that was horribly ungrateful of them.

        A couple weeks ago, I was with friends in the Pheasant Lane Mall, in Nashua, NH. While waiting in the food court for a sandwich shop to finishmaking our order, I noticed that a $5 bill had fallen from another customer’s purse. So I stepped over, touched her lightly on the arm to get her attention, and pointed out that she’d dropped the bill. She was very grateful, and thanked me emphatically.

        I thought that was that, and I was happy with my gentlemanly good deed for the evening.

        Then she came back, thanked me again, and … handed me the $5 bill. She wouldn’t take no for an answer, either. Very generous of her, and entirely above and beyond the call of duty.

    • Tankueray says:

      I found an ATM card once at the ATM. I figured I’d just get the machine to eat it by putting in the wrong PIN code. So I typed 1234… …. …. yes, it was the person’s PIN. I then just took a deposit envelope and put it in the machine.

      It occurs to me that in the many times I’ve seen a 4 digit code used for something, 1234 seems to be very popular.

  10. blogger X says:

    God bless that man.

  11. Buddha says:

    I think the real story here is why is a Navy Veteran homeless. What a country we live in……

    • SonarTech52 says:

      +100

    • lolBunny says:

      Also, why aren’t his children who live in other states helping him? The least they could do is offer him a spare bedroom or a finished basement to live in. I can only assume he did the same for them when they needed it growing up, time to return the favor.

    • evnmorlo says:

      Living space is cramped on warships, and it looks bad when a bunch of old derelict sailors sleeping on deck are washed off in a storm

    • Destra says:

      Why would that be any different from another person being homeless?

      • axhandler1 says:

        So, you don’t distiguish at all between veterans, people who put their lives on the line to protect your freedoms, and regular civilians. Interesting.

        • Destra says:

          I find it strange that people would assume that it’s a lesser tragedy for a private citizen to be homeless than someone was was part of the armed forces. A private citizen can do just as much for my society as a soldier could. A private citizen can suffer more than a soldier in their lives. Why draw an arbitrary distinction because of their previous job? Instead, a person should be looked at as an individual.

          • SonarTech52 says:

            Im thinking there may be a direct correlation to say, vietnam vets having to deal with all the shit over there and their mental state of mind. In alot of cases, the war they were sent to caused their mental issues, and their inability to adapt to society.

            • Rommel says:

              Exactly. My aunt was hit by her own side’s gas (something about orange, or something involving the color orange) and it fried her brain so much, that having a lot of people around her would make her go nuts.

              I especially feel for ‘Nam vets who were tunnel rats. Being in a confined space sucks alone, but in a confined space that can collapse on you, shoot at you, blow up in your face, and is comepletely dark drains almost all of your sanity.

        • Hooray4Zoidberg says:

          “Christopher served in the Navy in the 1980s in a noncombat position before receiving an honorable discharge”

          Just because you’re in the navy doesn’t mean you’re putting your life on the line. I agree we should do more for veterans who’ve seen combat, obviously PST make its much harder to come out and land on your feet. But just being in the military alone shouldn’t give you priority status over other homeless who need help.

      • Intheknow says:

        What? These are the men and women who have put their lives on the line. They don’t get nearly the help they deserve when they return. Homelessness can be for a lot of reasons, but lack of support to a veteran is appalling.

    • Hoss says:

      There are countries that donate homes to Navy veterans?

  12. SonarTech52 says:

    Hooyah! Go Navy!

  13. tungstencoil says:

    Working as a bartender, a fellow bartender found an envelope with several thousand in it cash. This was in Detroit area; a guy working at a machine shop got paid once monthly in cash. My co-worker turned it in, and the manager figured out who the guy was from the pay stub.

    Interestingly, the guy never called the restaurant or asked about it. The manager called him, introduced himself, and said something like, “How are you?” The guy replied, “Really, really bad…”

    He got his money, and I was always impressed with my co-worker’s honesty.

  14. momtimestwo says:

    Why are so many vet’s homeless? I see it on the news all the time, homeless and/or disabled vets, mostly Vietnam vets. I thought they received some kind of check every month, but maybe I’m wrong. It just seems so wrong.

    • evnmorlo says:

      I think you have to serve at least 20 years to get a pension or be substantially wounded to get disability. Tens of millions of people go through the armed forces, most of them poor to begin with, so it’s surprising that after a few years of low pay, youth wasted on extensive training in non-transferable skills, and combat trauma, so few of them are homeless.

      • SonarTech52 says:

        Correct.

      • Intheknow says:

        That’s so true. I work for a SS disability law firm and I see it daily. The physical and emotional trauma go very deep and cause lifelong issues. Way too many veterans are indigent or close to it. many are too injured physically or emotionally to keep a marriage or home together. They don’t need pity or condescension, but they do at least deserve the respect and care due them.

    • Destra says:

      A lot of the people on the streets end up homeless because of emotional or mental problems. Unfortunately, a lot of vets also have these problems, and so a higher portion of homeless are often vets.

  15. sixseeds says:

    A man sitting next to me on the bus stood to leave as we were approaching the next stop. When I happened to look down a few seconds later, I saw that his wallet had fallen onto the seat, so I grabbed it, jumped up and handed it to him just before he exited.

    He eyed me suspiciously, snatched it out of my hand without saying thank you, and stepped off the bus. God I love Chicago.

  16. darcygreen says:

    Just recently where I worked, a gentleman turned in $170 that he had found in the parking lot. No wallet just money. I was shocked that someone would just turn in money. I took his name and phone number and told him if no one claimed it in 30 days he could have it. 2 days ago I called him and he came and got the money. I am still amazed that he didn’t just keep the money when he found it. Nice guy !

  17. HeyApples says:

    With the ubiquity of credit/debit cards, ATM machines, auto bill pay, PayPal, and dozens of other alternatives, I don’t even understand why one needs to carry that much cash in a wallet any more.

    • Michaela says:

      Some people like to use cash because it is easier to mentally understand how much one has spent.

      There is something different about paying with a card. You don’t notice as much how much you have spent that day. It’s why I carry mostly cash.

      • jerrycomo says:

        Cash is king.

        Although, often when I go out, I don’t bring any cash or debit to avoid impulsive or stupid purchases. Works 100% of the time!

  18. Destra says:

    I would probably take some money out of a found wallet as a finders fee- or more accurately “I didn’t steal your identity or credit card numbers and I prevented others from doing the same fee.” Or at least that’s what I think I’d do. In the moment I might wuss out and return the wallet in full.

    • Michaela says:

      That would be unfortunate. What if the person honestly couldn’t afford to pay you as much as you felt you deserved? Is the satisfaction in doing something right not enough for you?

      • Destra says:

        If a person couldn’t afford as much as I would take, they’re still getting back much more than they would’ve had I not returned the wallet at all. In the end they’re still better off because of me.

        • Michaela says:

          Is that what you would tell them when giving the wallet back? Would you be offended if they asked for the money back? What would you say if they immediately gave you a reward before you could mention you took their money?

          • Destra says:

            Is that what you would tell them when giving the wallet back?
            I don’t know whether I’d tell them that I took the money or not. I wouldn’t normally have to face them if I was turning the wallet into the police anyway.

            Would you be offended if they asked for the money back?
            No, I wouldn’t be offended, and if they really were in a bind I’d give it back. Just like I wouldn’t take money out of a child’s wallet or someone who also has things like foodstamps in there.

            What would you say if they immediately gave you a reward before you could mention you took their money?
            I’d refuse it.

        • allknowingtomato says:

          Why be stingy about a good deed? And, honestly, under property law, you’re still a thief, even if they are technically “better off” because of your act of “kindness.”

          People don’t normally find what the law considers abandoned wallets, they find lost or misplaced ones. If you take it from where it has been dropped, you are effectively agreeing to put in reasonable effort to return it. you are not automatically entitled to any of its contents.

          If I had to return the wallet by mail, I might use cash from the wallet to pay for shipping, as i shouldn’t have to spend my own money to return someone’s property. But by your argument, you would be justified in taking ALL the money/gift cards from the wallet, because the person is still technically “better off” not having to replace his driver’s lisence etc.

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

      Considering a stolen credit card will at most cost you $50, you aren’t really saving them much by taking just the cash. You are also committing a felony by stealing someone’s identity. In essence, you are extorting money from them because you are being “honest”.

    • JulesNoctambule says:

      So you’d be glad to steal from someone for the ‘courtesy’ of preventing others from stealing from them. Wow. Aren’t you a winner?

      • Destra says:

        A lot of people here would. I’m being honest when I say that I might, and that’s a pretty solid moral code that I’m comfortable living with.

        • myCatCracksMeUp says:

          You’re a creepy, stinking thief, and not even ashamed of it.

          Most of us here would not steal money from a wallet. We’d contact the owner and return the money and the wallet.

    • theduckay says:

      No, I don’t think “a lot of people here” would do that, considering most people here are posting stories about how they’ve returned people’s wallets to them fully intact. Why not just do something out of the kindness of your heart? Why the need to feel as though you deserve some little “prize” for it? Grow up and get over yourself cause you sound like a selfish little kid.

      • Destra says:

        Am I a thief? You sound awfully angry for something I might do. Perhaps you should save your vitriol for actual thieves.

  19. Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

    Are we that desperate for heroes that any nice/good thing a person does makes them a hero? I applaud the homeless man for doing the right thing…but come on…

    • Qantaqa says:

      In a world where we’re so jaded we can barely see straight, yes, it’s nice to be reminded that not everyone is out for themselves or out to screw you over. Which is why I still cling to the spirit of Christmas like a drowning sailor clinging to a plank of wood.

    • grumblingmumbles says:

      Would this be equivalent to the “blame the op” comments.

      Take an upbeat story and put a negative spin on it? Way to go.

  20. AllanG54 says:

    I have returned at least three wallets I’ve found. Only once did I get a reward but that was never a factor.

    • Paladin_11 says:

      I would refuse a reward if offered. I shouldn’t profit from doing the right thing. If that person insisted I would suggest they make an equal donation to the charity of their choice. But that’s me. Other people should feel free to do what works for them.

  21. startertan says:

    I found a wallet when I was shopping at PetsMart. I went inside and no one had said anything so I took it home. It had about $100, credit cards, SSA card, health insurance, etc. in it. I found the guys license but could not find his phone number online but found a relatives. Called them and you could hear him screaming in the background.

    I opted to take it to the local police precinct where he could pick it up. He called me the next day and thanked me. Said he was a DirecTV installer and would do a free install if I wanted.

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

      After losing $70 at the flea market when it fell out of my pocket, I started carrying my flea market money in a wallet on a chain, so I wouldn’t lose it. Only problem was the chain ended in a leather loop that needed to be threaded through a belt. One day while wearing my BDU pants, which I usually don’t wear a belt with, it fell out while I was going to PetsMart. I didn’t have ANY information inside it, as it was just for cash on the weekends. Some lady found me in the store and told me where to claim it. Since then, I keep two of my business cards in there, just in case, and removed the rivet that was holding it as a loop, and put in a button snap, so I can secure it around the belt loop/hammer loop of whatever pants/overalls I wear.

  22. jaydez860 says:

    I found a Seiko watch in the parking lot of a park when I was on vaction when I was 13. I brought it into the office there and they said to leave an address in case no one came in and claimed it. I forgot about it completely until 3 years later when I recevied a package in the mail with a letter stating no one claimed it after 3 years so it was mine. I took it to a shop in town to have cleanned and the crystal replaced. They appraised it at $300. I still have it 15 years later and wear it occasionally.

  23. ichiban1081 says:

    I was on my way to work one day about 4 years ago and was about to hop on the train. I noticed a man rushing to buy his metrocard from the machine and trying to catch the next train. He dropped his wallet AND his credit card and bolted for the train. I ran right after him and managed to JUST get in before the doors closed. I gave him his wallet and his card and he thanked me until I got off at the next stop since I had to get off and change trains and go the opposite direction. It just felt good to do something nice for someone without even thinking, I just reacted.

  24. danmac says:

    I wish someone like this found my wife’s diamond engagement ring when it fell off her finger in a local shopping center. We contacted management, put ads in the paper, on craigslist, etc. It didn’t help.

    Oh, and I would like to thank everyone in advance for telling me I should have purchased insurance on the ring. Thanks for that!

    • npage148 says:

      I don’t know if it’s good advice I don’t think I’d leave a found CC/debit card with a store clerk or anyone short of a bank worker or police officer. I’d worry about them going on a spending spree. I’d probably just call the number on the back and destroy the card.

    • Intheknow says:

      Her ring fell off? I just can’t imagine a ring falling off and not feeling it. I think if it was THAT loose, perhaps she should have had it sized.

  25. Scribblenerd says:

    Found a wallet on the subway steps. There was a company ID in it, and the company was about 2 blocks from where I worked. I phoned the company, contacted the owner and returned it to her. I don’t recall how much cash was in it, if I even checked. I just knew I’d want somebody to do the same for me.

  26. u1itn0w2day says:

    I like it!

    Hopefully it’s a sign of things to come for this man. What goes around comes around.

  27. MaxSmart32 says:

    I applaud this man, but isn’t it sad that these stories are the exception to the rule?

  28. Hi_Hello says:

    that’s cool but the word homeless and vet together should never exist….

  29. montusama says:

    I work in clothing retail, found a 20 on the floor took it to my manager. Later on when I was called to the register my boss told the lady (and her son) that I found the boys 20.

    She did however give me a reward….I said I couldn’t take this but between having customers and no less being at the register I quickly took it after I declined a second time. She said use it to buy a coffee, I thought it was a couple bucks. It was 5 dollars.

    I later used it to buy a Sam Adams Winter Lager on draft.

  30. MrEvil says:

    I probably woulda just given the guy the cash upon my wallets return. One of my great uncles would have gone further than that, taken him to dinner, bought him a change of clothes, and maybe even a beer or two.

  31. jjcraftery says:

    I always try to find the owner of lost stuff. Because I know how I feel, when I lose something. Whether it’s a hat, or a wallet…I like my stuff, and I’d like someone to give it back to me, if I lost it. So that’s what I try and do. Unless it’s a clueless situation, like a hat on the side of the road or whatever…

    I was tubing a river once, and we went through some rapids, and someone lost a baggie with some money in it. I figured it had to be one of the people ahead of us. So I went to get it, but one of the people I was with got to it first, counted the money, and pocketed it. I was LIVID!!!

    My friend was walking into a WaWa once, and dropped a $100 out of his pocket. Inside, a black man came up to him and told him he dropped it, and gave it to him. I mention that he was black, because it was a good lesson for my friend, who is predjudice against most people!
    So this was totally opposite of the typical stereotypes, and I got to smirk at him and tell him “SEE!!!! It’s CERTAIN people who ruin it for an entire RACE! Dummy!!”

    My Mom went grocery shopping for our week vacation once, got home, and immediately sped away seconds later. She had realized she left her purse, with about $2000 for vacation inside the shopping cart!
    Someone had turned the purse in by the time she got back to the store, and every cent was still in it. Whew!!! We don’t know who turned it in…

    Last year at Walmart, I was second in line at the register at Xmas time. The lady in front of me paid for her stuff, and was just ready to leave, when I looked down and saw $20 bills all over the floor under her!
    I tapped her, and asked “did you drop these?” She looked really surprised and freaked out, as she scooped them up, thanked me and left. There were LOTS of $20′s!!
    I still wonder to this day if it was actually HERS or not. I sure hope so!!! Grrrrr!!!

    Years ago, my husband went to the MAC machine in town. A little later, I got a call from a lady who said she found his MAC card in the machine, and the computer screen said “do you want another transaction?”
    Yeah. Good one, ace!!!
    Luckily, the lady said “No”, and somehow found my number at the bank, and since we were not nearby, I gave her my husband’s parent’s address near the bank, and she knocked on their door and gave it to them. Nice lady!! :)

    We’ve found, and we’ve lost over the years.
    And the heartbreak over losing stuff that hasn’t come back to us, stays with me when I find something I know someone would definately want back.

  32. JulesNoctambule says:

    I found a purse and wallet in my back yard one morning; checked the ID and it belonged to a neighbour. I took it down to her and she said she’d come home from walking the dogs to find someone had broken in but fortunately, they’d just taken her purse. Her credit cards were gone but they left the cash — we couldn’t figure out the reasoning behind that! I also found someone’s ATM card in the machine; it was close to a bank branch so I just took it in and left it with a clerk. Some people might have seen it as a chance for a free-for-all on someone else’s dime, but I find that it’s easier to go through life not being an asshole.

  33. Hooray4Zoidberg says:

    I’ve seen this guy around town before. I’m going to remember to give him some good money next time I see him. I found a wallet in a cab once and it had $60 in, even as someone who’s pretty well off I even debated keeping the money myself for a minute. I can’t imagine how hard it must have been for a homeless person to do the same.

  34. dopplerd says:

    I once found a checkbook frozen in the ice of a grocery store parking lot. It was my dad’s and he lost it a few days earlier. When I returned it to him he replied, “I’ve been looking for that.”

  35. sonnetfm says:

    Aw man, even when thinking of stealing the money he wasn’t thinking of himself.

    One time I found $20 and kept it. It was either that, or turn it in to my employer’s security guards (who have a pretty bad reputation of stealing things) so they could keep it.

  36. Geekybiker says:

    I found a wallet packed with cash in a movie theater. I was unemployed at the time. I turned it into the management there. I wonder if it made it back to the owner with the cash still in it?

  37. AD8BC says:

    My non-computer-literate friend found an Ipod in a parking lot. She really didn’t know what to do with it so she put it in the cupholder of her car for a couple of months and that’s when I saw it. She told me that she found it, there was no name on it, etc. so I took it home and hooked it up to Itunes and charged it. The display lit up but didn’t work otherwise, but it did load into Itunes and I figured, well, if I can’t find the owner I would at least save some of this cool music before I threw it away. Most of the music was not purchased through Itunes and loaded up fine, but I did find an album that was purchased through Itunes and needed to be transferred to the new device. And it had an email address as the login name! I emailed and a very nice lady told me where she worked, I gave the Ipod back to my friend who delivered it to her and this “very nice lady” treated my friend like she stole it from her. Really made my friend angry, until I told her how much cool music I was able to “borrow” from it!

  38. racshot65 says:

    A girl next to me on the bus last week left her phone on the seat. I got up and gave it back to her as she left.

    I felt good about myself, she didn’t loose her phone win win situation.

  39. zenpirate says:

    This reminds me of one of many weird stories from my past. I was snorkeling in the Florida Keys one time about six years ago and was taking samples of some underwater plants (I was taking a botany class at the time and had to do this for a project). As I was plucking one plant off the side of some coral, I noticed something sticking out. I dug around a little bit (it was a piece of dead coral, so didn’t feel too badly about it) and I yanked out a leather wallet that had almost been absorbed by the coral! I took a look at it later that afternoon and found a driver’s license, credit cards, even a few photos. Every card in it had expired in the early 1990′s. I’m sure someone on a fishing boat had their wallet out and accidentally dropped it in the water, and it had somehow ended up embedded in some coral near the shore. I left the wallet out to dry on the deck for a day or two, put it in a Ziploc bag, stuck it in a padded envelope with a note saying where and when I’d found it, and sent it off to the address on the driver’s license. I always wondered if it ever actually got back to him and what he thought when he opened the package to find his long-lost wallet!

  40. Pax says:

    The guy is a wonderful man, for tracking the owner down and returning the wallet, cash and all.

    But what I want to know is, why are we allowing a veteran to go homeless? The man gave several years of his life in service to the country. Can’t we at least make sure he has a roof over his head when he goes to sleep at night??

  41. squirrel says:

    Working one evening in the local hospital, I got a call a driver from the mortuary was coming for one of our “less fortunate” guests.

    The driver pointed out the sizeable diamond ring on the ring finger and he said didn’t want responsibility for it. I pointed out that the body had swollen slightly and there was no way it was coming off. Then he showed me one of the tricks these guys know – using a piece of string, he got it off leaving the finger fully intact, and dropped it in my hand.

    I dropped it off in the hospital safe and looked up the patient info on the computer and called the listed next of kin – who I could hear were still grieving based on all the sobbing going on on the other end of the phone. Needless to say they were surprised to get the call, and quite pleased to hear the ring was recovered. I hung up, knowing I did my part to be an upright honest citizen for a minute or two, then went back to hating my job.

  42. Mphone says:

    I found a brand new Razor phone in a parking lot. Back when Razors where awesome and new. I used my smarts and checked the contacts. Found a listing for home. Called it and told the lady on the other end I found the phone with number listed as home at the Gas Station. Waited for her to show up.

    YAY!

  43. Wolfbird says:

    I found $80 in a parking lot once. I kept it. I’m so going to hell.

  44. SalesGeek says:

    There are decent people out there and I’ve seen it firsthand. In the mid-1990′s I was in the parking lot where I work late at night talking to one of my customers. We were robbed at gunpoint (there is an ATM outside the building that attracts robbers according to the police). They got both my wallet and my customer’s wallet.

    This was between 11:00 PM and midnight.

    By noon the next day we both had our wallets back, less the cash that was removed by our assailants. The two wallets were tossed onto the street miles apart in different locations. The next morning two separate good citizens found our wallets and turned them into the police.

    This is an amazing experience. While getting mugged in a parking lot is something I would not wish on anyone, it was really something that there were two very honest folks out there who helped make this a far less traumatic experience.

    The only wallet I’ve ever found was in Amsterdam this fall. We were watching a parade of local musicians and one of the younger gentleman at the end of this parade dropped his wallet when he was putting into his back pocket. He didn’t notice this but I caught it in the viewfinder of my camera. We ran out into the street, scooped up his wallet and caught up to him. Neither my wife or I speak Dutch so the best we could do was just hand it back to him and point to the ground. He was grateful and I’m pretty sure he thanked us…:-)

  45. SalesGeek says:

    There are decent people out there and I’ve seen it firsthand. In the mid-1990′s I was in the parking lot where I work late at night talking to one of my customers. We were robbed at gunpoint (there is an ATM outside the building that attracts robbers according to the police). They got both my wallet and my customer’s wallet.

    This was between 11:00 PM and midnight.

    By noon the next day we both had our wallets back, less the cash that was removed by our assailants. The two wallets were tossed onto the street miles apart in different locations. The next morning two separate good citizens found our wallets and turned them into the police.

    This is an amazing experience. While getting mugged in a parking lot is something I would not wish on anyone, it was really something that there were two very honest folks out there who helped make this a far less traumatic experience.

    The only wallet I’ve ever found was in Amsterdam this fall. We were watching a parade of local musicians and one of the younger gentleman at the end of this parade dropped his wallet when he was putting into his back pocket. He didn’t notice this but I caught it in the viewfinder of my camera. We ran out into the street, scooped up his wallet and caught up to him. Neither my wife or I speak Dutch so the best we could do was just hand it back to him and point to the ground. He was grateful and I’m pretty sure he thanked us…:-)

    • SalesGeek says:

      Sorry about the duplicate post. My computer decided to upgrade something or other in the middle of my post.

  46. anduin says:

    ive found cash in areas where it wasn’t associated with an ID so I pocketed the cash. I have also seen the spur of the moment losses where someone drops a book, wallet, ipod and phone (yes all of these) and I immediately pick it up and run up to them to give it back. In every situation it would have been just as easy to just pocket the item and move along.

  47. Snaptastic says:

    As a freelance artist that sometimes does art shows, I end up with credit cards and wallets on my table all the time. I usually start off by standing on a chair and yelling the person’s name to see if they are within earshot, then I hang onto it for a hour or so in case the person returns. If that fails, I take it to the police or lost/found–and most times have ran across the person who lost in en route as well.

    As for lost credit cards, I just hang on to them, wait for the owner, and shred them after the art show if they don’t get claimed (I have less faith in leaving a lone credit card at the lost/found). I’ve tried calling the companies to see if they would help, but they are stupid and baffled that a stranger would try returning the card. I figure once the owner realizes the card is truly lost, they will have the card canceled soon enough, so I just need to keep the card safe in the meantime.

    My friends joke that if someone is going to lose wallets or credit cards, my table is the best place to do it.

  48. ninabi says:

    Found a woman’s wallet in the carts outside of Trader Joes a month ago. Turned it in to customer service. Didn’t check to see if anything was inside.

  49. Intheknow says:

    I kind of wish more people would come upon a situation like this – An excellent test of character and integrity. This guy’s a winner!

  50. Framling says:

    I found a kid’s wallet on the bus a few weeks back. It contained his school ID, a Taco Del Mar punch card with all its punches punched, and four dollars.

    I thought to myself, “yeah, I remember ninth grade,” and dropped it off at his school the next morning on my way to work.

  51. nodaybuttoday says:

    Was he rewarded? Even a nice meal or something…

  52. ellemdee says:

    I pulled up to the ATM one day and discovered that the customer who just pulled away left her card in the machine and didn’t even finish her session, so I still had full access to her account. I grabbed the card and walked up to the bank door, but they had just closed. They didn’t want to open the door for me, but finally did when I held up the card and yelled “this isn’t mine!”. The bank employee was annoyed that I made her stay at work 30 seconds longer to take the card from me. If someone dishonest had pull up, they could have cleared out her whole account.

    I actually had my wallet stolen right after high school, and it sucked because I lost all my friend’s senior pictures with their contact info on the back. This was pre-Facebook/internet, so I was never able to get in touch with those people again.

  53. adam395 says:

    Pocket street-cash (loose bills on the sidewalk or on mass transit), always track down and return wallets or other lost belongings. Treat others as you wish to be treated, and I sure as Hell itself would hate to have somebody just walking around with my phone or cards.