It’s a sh*itty feeling when you misplace your wallet. But if you were to have lost $32,000? Talk about pure panic. Recently, one California family experienced that heart-stopping moment firsthand when they left that exact amount in a Fresno-area Applebee’s.

Mother and daughter Bertha and Erika Gonzalez were dining at the restaurant last week before they planned to stop by a bank to deposit the cash. When they went to pay for the meal, Erika thinks that her mother must have dropped the sum when she reached into her purse for her card. Problem is that they only realized the error after they left.

They figured their chance to recover the sum would be all for naught, as the $32,000 was surley tucked tightly into another person’s purse by then. But that was before detective Sammy Ashworth delivered the family a Christmas miracle: all $32,000, which a bill-counting machine verified.


How did the police come into possession of the cash? The family’s waiter turned it in after they had left the restaurant.

So who is this good samaritan? Besides Applebee’s management, no one currently knows the name and age of the waiter, specifically because the waiter prefers to remain anonymous. According to his manager, Carrie Hellyer, “he made it very clear he did it because it was the right thing to do, not because he wanted anything in return.” The subtext is clear: he isn’t willing to accept a cash or honorary reward if offered.


CNN affiliate KFSN notes that what makes this waiter’s act even more remarkable is the fact that the area where the Gonzalezes sat has no security cameras. Regardless, the family plans to thank the enigmatic employee for his good deed.

[Via Uproxx]