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Thrift shop manager finds $5,000, returns it to person who lost it

By Kenny Choi

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    BURLINGAME, California (KPIX) — What would you do if you found $100? What about $1,000? What about much more than that?

A Bay Area thrift shop manager did. It’s what he did after finding fistfuls of cash that’s a reminder of how kindness can be paid forward without expecting anything in return.

The day started like any other, at Pick of the Litter in Burlingame.

Oliver Jolis, the thrift shop manager, rang up sales and began organizing bags of donated clothes when something very odd happened.

“Money just started falling out,” said Jolis.

“Money flew out of the shirt! We went ‘uh oh’,” said co-worker Amy Walsh.

“It kept falling and falling. I was like ‘This is a decent amount of money here,'” said Jolis.

It wasn’t just a few bucks. Try $5,000 in cash.

Inside the bag, he found an old piece of paper with car insurance information. With the help of his coworkers, they contacted the woman who regularly donates items to the store.

She correctly answered all their questions.

“I said come on down I’ve got something for you. She came back and I gave her $5.000 in a paper bag and said ‘Thank you for supporting us,'” said Jolis.

The woman asked us not to identify her, for her safety, and fear of being targeted.

“He could have just put the money in his pocket. Nobody would have known. But he didn’t,” said the woman who donated the clothes with money inside the bag.

In a short time, Jolis has become a familiar face at the store. All profits go to the Peninsula Humane Society. The non-profit finds homes for thousands of animals, many that come to them sick or injured.

Jolis rescued his furry loved ones, Summer and Alzie. Regular customers have become friends.

“I wasn’t surprised he found it and gave it back,” said San Mateo resident Trina Pierce. “We just love Oliver. The whole staff is great but Oliver is special.”

That spirit of kindness abounds at Pick of the Litter. Sales and revenue are strong; that means animals looking for homes are winning, too.

“Whatever you do in this world comes back to you ten times, be it negativity or positivity, it comes back,” said the anonymous woman.

“We’re grateful for all the donations we get, so it was a win-win,” said Jolis.

Summer and Alzie know, too, that they have a forever friend who’s always looking out for those around him.

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