A group of Vancouver Value Village employees is being praised for doing the right thing, after finding more than $85,000 stashed away in a donation bag.
“It is really a feel-good story. This is found money; who knows what they could have done with it,” Sgt. Steve Addison told Global News on Thursday.
“They did the right thing, they called the police, and we’re in the process of returning the money to the rightful owner.”
The workers found the money while sorting through a bag of donations at a Value Village facility on Venables Street on Jan. 18, Addison said.
He said they initially thought it might be gang or drug related, but after seeing how old the bills were and noticing that they had a musty odour, realized the cash had likely been hidden away for years.
The cash included $100 and $50 bills, some with printing dates going back as far as 1954, but all legal tender.
“People squirrel away money for all kinds of reasons,” Addison said.
As it turned out, the cash belonged to an elderly woman now living in long-term care.
Her family had donated a number of bags of her belongings while clearing out a storage locker, without knowing that the money existed, Addison said.
“Fortunately with the cash there were a couple of bank receipts, and the bank receipts had names on them,” he said.
Police were able to use that information to track the woman and her family down.
He said the family was exceptionally grateful for the find, and commended the workers for being honest when they discovered the trove of bills.