Hunter Shamatt had resigned himself to the fact that his wallet was gone for good.
As KSFY reports, the 20-year-old from Brandon, South Dakota was headed to his sister’s wedding in Las Vegas when he left his wallet on the plane. The loss was a financial blow to Hunter, who had $60 in cash, a signed paycheck for $400, his ATM card, and his ID in the wallet.
As Hunter’s mom, Jeannie, wrote on Facebook, Hunter tried calling the airline, but no one had turned in the wallet. At that point, Hunter was prepared to accept that he wouldn’t see his money again. What he didn’t know was that the wallet had been found by a man who enjoys performing good deeds.
On our way to Vegas for my daughters wedding last week, Hunter lost his wallet. Unfortunately it had 60.00 cash, his…
Todd Brown, a father of five from Denver, came across Hunter’s wallet while trying to buckle his seat belt on his flight home from Omaha. Brown told Yahoo Lifestyle that he initially thought about giving the wallet to the airline crew, but decided to take responsibility for getting it back to Hunter:
“I thought about it, but I just wanted to make sure he got it back. It had some cash in it and a signed paycheck, and a debit card, so I wanted to make sure he got it back.”
When he got home, Brown found Hunter on Facebook and tried to contact him about the missing wallet. Though Hunter never responded, Brown had the address from Hunter’s ID, so there was no question of where to send it. But the dad kept thinking about what the loss must have meant to Hunter.
Brown remembered being Hunter’s age. When he saw the paycheck in the wallet, Brown told Yahoo that he couldn’t help but think, “‘Well, he’s doing his best to make ends meet,’ but I was 20 once, and that’s a lot of money for a kid.”
So Brown decided to put something extra in the wallet before returning it. He told Yahoo:
“I was putting it together to send via FedEx, and when I sent it off, I wanted to have a little fun, I wanted him to have a little fun. I imagined what it would be like to get your wallet back, so I added a little bit so he could celebrate.”
The dad slipped an extra $40 into the wallet. Then he mailed it with a note — unsigned because Brown prefers to do his good deeds anonymously.
When Hunter opened his mail to find his lost wallet, he was so stunned that he didn’t even notice the note at first. It read:
Hunter found this on the Frontier flight from Omaha to Denver, row 12 seat F, wedged between the seat and the wall. Thought you might want it back. […] I rounded you cash up to an even $100 so you could celebrate having your wallet back. Have fun.
Hunter said he and his family were amazed to that someone would go through the trouble to return the wallet — not to mention adding the extra gift. He told Yahoo:
“It really meant a lot that he would go out of his way and do that for a complete stranger. I’m still paying off school loans and I got truck loans to pay off so it really helps out.”
Wanting to thank the good Samaritan who returned the wallet, Jeannie posted the note to Facebook and asked for help finding the anonymous sender. One of Brown’s co-workers saw Jeannie’s post and put the mother and son in touch with Brown, giving them a chance to call and thank him.
Brown says he added the extra money to Hunter’s wallet because he knows how good it feels to find money. He told Yahoo: “Anything from just finding an extra $20 in your pocket from last year when you put your coat away. When I send my mom a card, I still put a dollar in there because it feels good when you open it.”
Hunter told KSFY that Brown’s gesture proves, “there’s more good out there than there is evil.” Jeannie shared a similar sentiment, writing on Facebook:
We hear a lot of bad news but not enough good news. I personally want to thank Todd Brown and his wife for restoring faith that there are amazing people out there. The world is not as grim as it’s being made out to be.
Brown says he never expected his kind gesture to become a news item. He told Yahoo: “I just wanted to do the right thing, it always feels good to do the right thing. It’s really not that hard to be a good person.”