Unknown Good Samaritan proves kindness is still among us

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 31, 2004

As the world seems to be focused on war and terrorism, the small acts of kindness of individuals may seem insignificant.

This could not be further from the truth. They are, in fact, what matter the most. Last week, I was the recipient of a random act of kindness.

After a busy work day Friday, I rushed out of the office knowing I had just 15 minutes to pick up my son from latchkey at Dawson-Bryant Elementary in Deering. In a rush I grabbed the things I needed to take home, including a week's worth of coffee cups and my wallet, which I had left on my desk.

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As I got to my car, I had to place the items on top of it so I could open the door. All of my coffee cups and various papers were placed in the back seat of my car, but the most important item - my wallet - was left on the roof.

Giving little thought, I drove off to Deering to get my son. During the trip, I decided I was going to pick up pizza for supper, and when I reached into my pocket to get my wallet, I felt the butterflies fluttering in my stomach - I had left it on my car!

As soon as I pulled into the parking lot at the school, I glanced at the top of my vehicle to see if by some miraculous circumstance my billfold would have stayed on the roof for the 10-plus-mile trip to Deering. As I expected, it had not.

After I picked up my son and my other two children in Ashland, Ky., I went back to the office to see if it fell off in the parking lot. No such luck.

From there, I drove into Coal Grove - twice - very slowly, looking all around to see if I could spot the piece of black leather. Out of luck again.

Dejected, I called my wife at work to tell her what happened and that she would have to pick up supper. I then began to think what I would have to do - cancel my credit and debit cards, get another driver's license.

When we got home, my oldest son went ahead of me to unlock the door while I unloaded my other two children from their car seats. He came running out of the house, holding a piece of notebook paper and said "Dad, you're in luck."

The piece of paper had been folded and stuck in my mail slot. Written in pink ink it read: "Mr. Doyle, your wallet was found on (State Route) 243 near Community (Missionary Baptist) Church. I tried to bring it to you, but you were not home. It is at the Ironton Police Department."

Unfortunately, it was not signed. I wanted so badly to thank the person who went out of their way to make sure I had my wallet. After all, this person did not merely take it to the police station, he or she made an effort to personally deliver it to me.

In this sometimes insane world, where everyone is feeling rushed and pressured, it is so wonderful to see some people take the time to help others.

I am very grateful to this individual and can only hope he or she reads this column. If you do, let me say thank you so much for taking the time to make my life a little easier.

Shawn Doyle is managing editor of The Ironton Tribune. He can be reached at (740) 532-1445, ext. 19 or by e-mail to shawn.doyle@irontontribune.com