Howard Kirby of Ovid, Michigan has been through a lot over the past years. He just went through a divorce, lost a cousin he was close with to cancer, and had a kidney removed. On top of that, his eldest son lost his job and had to move into Howard’s place along with his wife and their pets.
Despite all the bumps he passed over the years, Howard’s perspective and disposition remained the same – and you can clearly see it in how he handles unexpected situations, especially ones involving huge sums of money.
Not your typical thrift store “treasure”
It was at his house that his daughter-in-law Diane discovered more than $43,000 in cash stuffed in a couch cushion that Howard bought at a thrift store.
Howard and Ben didn’t even realize she was serious until they saw the money, stuffed into two envelopes.
Can you imagine what that would be like?
But instead of celebrating and using the money for necessities and home repairs, Howard knew right away what he had to do.
He told MLive:
“Being a born-again Christian, Christ in me is the one that actually gave the money back. Remember the bracelets, WWJD? Well, that’s what Jesus would do.”
With the help of the folks working at the thrift store, Howard was able to return the money to the rightful owner.
The family who donated the couch took Howard out to dinner to thank him, even saying they wanted to do something to repay him for what he did. The honest man was overwhelmed.
“There is so much thankfulness, it boggles my mind sometimes what is happening for me. I’m just amazed by it.”
Turns out, the couch had belonged to their grandfather, who passed away.
It didn’t take long for the news of Howard’s honesty to spread, and people immediately sprang into action to help the man who himself needed money.
John Conversa, branch manager of Eikenhout Saginaw, heard of Howard’s story and offered to help cover some needs such as roof repairs. John shares,
“We’re not doing it so much for a PR thing, we want to promote these kind of actions that he did. There’s not very many people nowadays who are upstanding like that. It’s a good thing for our employees to see that.”
Jay Tyrrell of Ancaster, Ontario decided to do something for Howard as well. He decided to start a GoFundMe fundraiser, explaining to MLive:
“It shows that there’s still good people out there. It’s been very inspiring. I hope that his actions will have other people kind of look at their own lives and think about how they can be better members of society.”
He has since raised more than $2,200 for Howard.
Refusing to take any of the credit and insisting it was all because of Christ, Howard declares,
“I don’t know how to say it, I’m blessed. I’m blessed beyond words. I have had so much peace, so much joy because I did do it, that $43,000 never could buy that much joy or peace or happiness.”
Even if a lawyer told Howard he wasn’t legally obligated to locate the owner of the money and return it, Howard felt it was his moral duty to do so.
It was a touching move that served as a gentle nudge for others to follow suit by finding ways to pay it forward.
So, if you were in Howard Kirby’s position, do you think you would’ve done the same?
Watch the video below and be inspired by this man’s honesty!
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