$3,400 Returned To Couple After Accidental Donation


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A couple who moved to Springfield just two weeks ago has received quite a warm welcoming.

After dropping off an accidental donation at the goodwill on Chestnut and Kansas, they are getting back some cash they didn’t even know they had.

Before they make it out on the floor, donations go through processing, where donation attendants go through them to separate items and ensure they are in good condition.

Last Thursday, Christina Swearingin was processing a few items when she found something in the pocket of a suitcase she knew wasn’t supposed to be there. 

“And all of a sudden I hear her shout, and she just came in screaming, and she said ‘I think this is real money’,” said Lynne Harmon, the manager at Goodwill Chestnut Crossing. 

And it was – cold, hard, cash.

“It ended up being $3,435,” said Harmon. 

It was probably a little dusty and old, too.

“About ten years ago that I probably stashed it in there,” said David Thomas.

David and Diann Thomas were getting rid of a few things after their move from Kansas City.

“Suitcases, a couple of garment bags, boxes and nick nacks,” said David.

In a suitcase pocket, they forgot the cash.

“Forgot about it,” said David. 

“We opened the suitcase, but we didn’t open the pockets,” said Diann.

The team at Goodwill got in touch with supervisors, and their security team and immediately started to try and track down the donors. But they didn’t have to go far; a couple days later, David and Diann came back to drop off more stuff.

“The folks who were at the door said ‘it’s them. It’s them! I think it’s those folks’,” said Harmon. 

After making sure they were the rightful owners, on Monday, David and Diann received the cash back and met Cristina Swearingin, who had found it.

“It was so nice,” said Harmon.

Swearingin didn’t want to talk to KOLR10 on camera but said she was glad to meet them.

‘It’s nice to know that there are people out there that are really honest,” said Diann.

And what will they do with the money?

“It’s going to help out with the moving expenses,” said Diann.

But not before celebrating.

“Well, it’s cold out so chili sounds good to me,” she said.

Goodwill encourages donors to search through all pockets, envelopes, and bags before donating items to the store to make sure you don’t leave anything behind.

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