In Maine this week, an 8-year-old girl named Abbie Jacobson stumbled across a purse outside her local Sam’s Club store. Inside it were an ATM card, several rings, some foreign currency and more than $4000 in American dollars.
No one was around and in most cases, I feel like the cash would have been pocketed immediately. Such is not the case with this young lady.
Abbie knew this money was important to someone, so she asked her parents to help report it to the police. Fortunately, the name “Ra Rim” was on the ATM card and the foreign currency in the purse was from Cambodia. They provided this information and the purse to police and also left a number where they could be reached.
As it turned out, the purse belonged to a Cambodian immigrant and the money inside was to be used for a trip to her native country. She and her husband were actually planning to leave the next day.
The Portland Press Herald picked up the story and put it on the front page. This caught the attention of John Everets, CEO of the Bank of Maine, who decided Abbie deserved a reward for her kindness. So he purchased tickets to a sold-out Justin Bieber concert and sent them her way.
When asked about his daughter’s altruism, John Jacobson had this to say: ”A lot of people have asked us why Abbie gave the money back. But we always taught our kids, ‘whatever is in your heart, you do the right thing.’ And it has paid off.”
To me, this is the perfect example not only of good parenting, but also of the benefits of instilling children with a genuine care for others. It certainly warms my heart to know young people like Abbie are living by the Golden Rule and actually feel badly for the misfortune of their fellow humans.
Thanks for showing us how being a good person has its own rewards, Abbie. And I hope you enjoy the concert, too!