On Monday, Sept. 3, my 17-year-old son went golfing as a guest with his girlfriend's dad at Chautauqua Point Golf Course in Dewittville.
After nine holes, they returned to the clubhouse to get a cold beverage. When my son reached for his wallet, he realized it was gone. He checked at the desk to see if anyone had turned it in but his hopes were dashed.
A few hours later, we got a call from the Mayville Police Department that my son's wallet had been turned in. Racing to the police station, it was discovered that his license and ID were there but all of the money was gone!.
The hardest part of this is that he had just cashed a good sized paycheck, cashed in all of his loose change he had collected over the summer and had money from a lawn mowing job. His plan was to go to the bank to deposit his money on Tuesday as it was Labor Day and the bank was closed.
He was so upset - mad at himself that he had all of that cash with him, that someone would take his hard earned money, that someone could just be OK with not turning the money. It was a harsh lesson.
He's a hard working guy and needs money to keep gas in his truck, insurance to keep it on the road and to treat his sweet girlfriend to ice cream. As the parents of this high school senior, we are very proud of our young man and his work ethic. To make a mistake by carrying so much cash is a decision we have all made from time to time.
Miraculously, a few days later, my son received a letter in the mail with a check.
Yes, there is a good ending to this story. A kind man found my son's wallet and instead of leaving the cash with the wallet, decided to turn the wallet into the police and send a check to our home. Inside there was a brief note indicating he wanted to be sure my son got his money back so he thought this was the best way to handle the situation. He gently cautioned him to "be more careful."
We were elated. Here we were thinking someone took the money and had probably already spent it. Wrong!
What a relief to know that honest people do still prevail. My son immediately called the man to thank him. He asked if he could bring the man a gift card to Ruby Tuesday's and shake his hand personally. The man said that was not necessary and that he was happy to help my son get his money back. My son bought a gift card for dinner and sent a thank you note that same day. He was so relieved.
A few lessons were learned by us all.
Lesson one: be careful with your hard-earned cash and lesson two: if you find something of value that belongs to someone else, do the right thing and return it. You will make their day and the rewards to you will come in droves. Random acts of kindness will come into your world.
The universe has a way of leveling the score. We sincerely thank the gentleman who helped our son for his kindness and great example of honesty and personal integrity.
The Goerke family lives in Jamestown.