Thanks to a keen-eyed donation attendant at Goodwill Northern Illinois' Machesney Park location, precious family coins are returned to a customer who mistakenly donated them.
Last fall, the employee spotted something unusual and turned it in to his supervisor. That something turned out to be $10,000 worth of uncirculated silver coins hidden in a hollow book that were donated along with other items from an estate — unbeknownst to the family.
Because nobody reported the coins missing, Goodwill's Finance Director Naomi Miller went on a mission to find their original owner. She only had a receipt to go off of, and couldn't find the individual's family through online obituaries. She finally enlisted help through local banks.
Brent Ward, an employee at Chase Bank, helped track down the trust account for the individual which led to the family member.
"If there is a chance to help out on of our customers, we will do whatever we can," Ward said.
The local customer, who wishes to remain anonymous, didn't realize what had happened, just that the coins had gone missing.
"Due to initiative way 'above and beyond' by Goodwill employees, my father's precious coins have been returned to me. I am able to finally put this to rest after 2 years of worry," the customer said.
The coins are now back home with the family.
"This story ended on a high note for the whole Goodwill organization," Miller said. "And we couldn't be happier."