When I was about 10 years old, I was playing in the wooded area near my grandparent’s house when my friend and I found a couple big trash bags full of soda bottles and another bag filled with cash. 


We took our findings to my grandma who called the police. When the police came, they said we could keep the bags of soda bottles, but they kept the cash.  I never did find out what happened to it or where it came from, but my guess is that someone was sleeping in the woods and when they heard us nearby, they ran.


I’ll tell you this, if every kid was like this little boy, we could all breathe easier about the future. Eight-year-old Max Parenti and his father Guy were out walking their dog in August when they found $1,450 in cash lying in the grass.


Guy said that finding the money led to the perfect teaching opportunity. Max asked if they were going to keep the money and Guy said ‘Keeping it is no different from taking it.’


So, Max and his dad took the money home to count and found a deposit slip among the bills, which Guy knew would be helpful in discovering who the money belonged to.  He and his son took the stash to the police station the next morning and using the slip, they were able to track down the owner, Cheri Smith, who had lost the money when she dropped her bag.


 “I grew up in this town and raised my kids here, and it really is the place it is because of people like Max’s parents, who used the opportunity to teach him, hey, we could put it in our pockets, but no, we all take care of each other,” said Cheri, who later returned to the police station with a thank you note and $100 for Max. “I’m a firm believer in karma so I think Max has a lot of good things coming his way.”


As for what Max plans to do with his reward, Guy said, “The last I heard, believe it or not, he wants to buy Pixie Stix.” Too cute and funny because that’s what my friend and I bought with the soda bottle money we collected.