BULLHEAD CITY — Honesty and honor are alive and well in the Tri-state.
And an unexpected find has turned into a feel-good story but with a sense of mystery and curiosity.
“We had a unique situation the other day,” said Autumn Boyle-Robinson, CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Colorado River.
The clubs operate two thrift stores, one in Bullhead City and one in Fort Mohave, as a means to generate a steady income for their various programs for children.
“One of our team members, Diana Dorn, in our Bullhead City store, found a money clip with $130 in cash, credit cards, a driver’s license, Social Security card, and a military I.D. inside the pocket of a clothing donation and she brought it to my attention. We began to try to find the gentleman it belonged to.”
Boyle-Robinson slipped into detective mode to figure out how to find him.
“Quite often when we find things like old wallets in donations, the previous owners have passed away, but we don’t get a whole lot of money clips with money,” she said. “That was a big red flag. So our goal was to see if the gentleman was still alive because we had no way of knowing where the donation came from. Most people just drop off their donations and go. I was able to locate him through his State Farm insurance agent in Mesa/Gilbert (Arizona).”
It was the only card in the wallet with contact information of any kind, so Boyle-Robinson took a chance and made the call.
“Needless to say, we found him through Max Panas, his State Farm agent, and he got in touch with his clients. They were very happy and surprised to get the call.
“I then got a call from the gentleman’s partner and she thought it was awesome we found it. But she was befuddled about how the money clip ended up with us because he’d lost it in February at the Colorado Belle or Edgewater. She was surprised that Diana found it in the pocket of a pair of pants that didn’t belong to the gentleman. It’s still a mystery how it ended up there.”
Panas was only too happy to have his office connect the dots, even though he was a bit apprehensive at first.
“At State Farm, we take care of our people first and foremost,” he said. “When people call us, and are up to no good, as a lot of calls seem to be in this day and age, we make sure we protect our policy holders’ personal information.
“When Autumn called Rebecca Walsh in my office, before she did anything else, Rebecca called the person in question, Carlota Thorne, and said, ‘hey somebody found your partner’s wallet in a thrift store operated by the Boys & Girls Clubs in Bullhead City.’ The lady was so surprised and happy because the wallet had been missing since February.
“Once we were able to verify the owner and the information, it made perfect sense to do the right thing,” Panas added. “We were impressed the person found the wallet and chose not to be dishonest. They could have pocketed the cash easily, so hats off to Autumn, who went above and beyond to find out who the owner was. It’s a blessing to come across people with the moral fiber to do the right thing. They are good hard-working people who do what’s right.”
In keeping with the theme of doing the right thing, the wallet’s owner donated the found cash back to the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Colorado River, as a small thank you.
“My parter, Don Finnell, and his cousin go to an annual reunion every year held at the Edgewater or Colorado Belle with the retired railroad workers from Cheyenne, Wyoming,” said Thorne. “This year it was at the Edgewater and the Edgewater or the Belle always do a great job with everything for the reunion — the dinner, the accommodations, everything. Donald lost his money clip. There was over $100 in cash, his military I.D., credit cards, everything. When he came home, he had no idea where he lost it.
“I called the security department over there and they were incredible, they looked everywhere for it, the room, in the dresser drawers, and couldn’t find it,” she added. “I spent the last 90 days rebuilding all of that when I got a call last week from our State Farm agent, Rebecca, who’d spoken to Autumn, the CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs in Bullhead City, and they’d found Donald’s money clip. The reason she had gone through our insurance agent — it was the only card with a phone number.
“I wasn’t familiar with the thrift stores and how they support the clubs, but I thought how kind of her to put the wallet in the mail to us,” Thorne said. “So I sent them a donation check in the mail for the cash they returned to us. That gesture speaks to a higher level of volunteer integrity and honesty. There was no other way to trace the owner of the wallet, so what a great effort. How it made its way across the Colorado River is shocking, and Autumn is so nice and she was kind enough to follow the trail.”
Boyle-Robinson was happy the wallet was returned to its rightful owner.
“I was very excited to find the owner,” she said. “It’s nice to know we have good people working in our thrift stores. I’m not surprised, but I am proud to have people who do the right thing, and the cash and property ended up in the right place.
“Teaching integrity to the kids starts with leading by example, and I am beyond proud of my team for how they handled this situation,” she added. “Receiving a donation from the couple is so very touching and generous.”