When thrift and consignment store clerk Jennifer Kimes discovered $7,000 in the pocket of some recently donated clothing, she was shocked.
“Sometimes you find gum, or a picture, or a grocery list,” Kimes, who works at Plato’s Closet in Valparaiso, Indiana, told ABC Chicago station WLS.
The rolled-up wad of cash, which was in a coat pocket, contained hundred-dollar bills—which actually scared Kimes.
“It made me nervous. I mean, you know, everybody wants to hold a wad of cash, but it wasn’t mine so I didn’t get too excited about it,” she said. So Kimes called her boss, Tammy Wendland, and put the money in a safe place in the register.
“I’m saying to her ‘what did you say? What did you say?’ And [she said] ‘a very large sum of money,’ and I was so surprised,” Wendland said.
Wendland got in touch with the jacket’s owner, who said he had hidden the money in the coat but had forgotten about it.
“He was extremely grateful,” Wendland said. Just extremely, overwhelmingly grateful.”
There was no reward for the lost cash, but Kimes and Wendland were happy to help return the money to its rightful owner.
“It’s just about integrity. So when you work with things like this, you just have to make sure that you’re honest and you do the right thing,” Kimes said.
“Doing the right thing is rewarding intrinsically,” Wendland agreed. “It makes you feel good inside to do the right thing, and there’s really nothing as special as feeling good inside.”