Volunteer Finds $4,000 in Old Book, Tracks Down Owner to Return Money

February 13, 2019 Updated: February 13, 2019

A volunteer in Arizona was leafing through an old book when, to her shock, she found $4,000.

Cathy McAllister, a retired teacher who has been volunteering with the Volunteer Nonprofit Service Association in Phoenix since 2012, was helping process donated books when she came upon a dated copy of “The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire.”

McAllister said that she was about to discard the book to be repurposed but had a feeling that she should leaf through it first.

“I don’t know what that was, I was literally throwing it in the discards,” she told Fox News. “It was just a feeling.”

Part way through the book, a hollowed-out portion containing the money was revealed.

“I was totally stunned,” McAllister said. “Truly. I was unable to find words. There were people in the category next to mine talking. I just took the open book and interrupted the conversation until I was able to say, “Look what I found!'”

Her initial thought was that the money wasn’t real, she told Fox 10.

“I had the book in my hands. I was ready to toss it, because we had several copies already … but when I fanned that book out, there’s a big hole carved out in the book amongst the pages, and I look down in there and I thought, ‘It’s monopoly money. Oh how fun,'” she said.

“But it’s not monopoly money. It was all banded as it comes from the bank. It was four packages of $100 bills.”

A photo of the inside of the book showed four packages of crisp bills, looking pretty new.

Inside the book was also a family letter that identified who the book—and the money—belonged to, and McAllister tracked them down.

She said that she spoke to the owner’s daughter over the phone and later met with the man in person to hand over the money.

As for deciding whether or not to return the money, she told Fox News she did what she thought was right. “My values were grounded in our faith—that the church taught us what was right and wrong. It just becomes who you are after a while,” she said.

Goodwill Employee Finds $46,000

A California Goodwill employee found thousands of dollars while he was sorting through cartons of donations at a San Diego facility.

Jessee Diaz was opening a tempura fryer donated to the nonprofit when he saw a large roll of tin foil inside.

Diaz said he nearly threw away the fryer but looked inside. That’s when he saw the tinfoil. Underneath the foil were five envelopes containing a total of $46,000 in cash.

After about a week, Goodwill employees were able to find the name of the woman who donated the fryer, Debra Colarusso.

Tune in to NBC 7 San Diego with Bob Hanson tonight (9/25) @ 11 pm for a special Goodwill story that you don't want to miss!

Gepostet von Goodwill Industries of San Diego County am Dienstag, 25. September 2018

She told them that the fryer was among the belongings of her mother-in-law, Michiko. Michiko’s husband had passed away and she was having memory issues, so the family had decided to donate some of her belongings.

Colarusso said she knew Michiko and her husband hid money but hadn’t known where.

“It was their secret squirrel account,” she told NBC 7. “When they got paid they would stash $100 into their secret account to save up for a rainy day.”

Colarusso thanked Diaz for passing along the money.

“We would have had no knowledge of this if it hadn’t been for you,” she said facing Jessee. “I don’t know what to say. Thank you so much.”

From NTD News

Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber
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