Amazing Recovery: Lost Wallet, Returned 40 Years Later

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Wallet. Getty Images.

Nothing restores faith in humanity quite like having a stranger go out of their way to return something that you’ve lost. Even if it is 40 years after the fact.

Rudolph R. Resta’s wallet disappeared from his coat while it was hanging in a closet in The New York Times building, where he worked as an art director in the promotion department. The year was 1970.

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In the autumn of 2010, a security guard named José Cisneros, was working in the building — now called the Times Square building — and he discovered the wallet when he was investigating a wall cavity where an old window had been. Whoever had stolen the wallet had clearly stashed it there once they’d removed the cash.

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Through a series of phone calls and brainstorming sessions, the wallet eventually made its way back into the hands of Resta, now 77. And though the money was long gone, Resta had reclaimed the mementos that really make a wallet valuable: photos of his sons, now in their 40s, as boys; a snapshot of his wife, Angela, posing with a car; a long-thought-lost photo of his late father, Nicola; a newspaper clipping of Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s eulogy for his brother, Senator Robert F. Kennedy which included a particular passage that resonated with Resta, “Some men see things as they are and say why. I dream things that never were and say why not.”

The full story of the wallet’s journey back to Resta’s hands is in the New York Times and well worth the read, even if only for a boost in your own faith in humanity. (via New York Times)