(WSVN) - A homeless man found and returned a sizable check to its rightful owner. She decided to repay his kindness, and it’s completely changed his life.
Yesenia Del Valle told Inside Edition that she took out a $676 cashier’s check to make a tax payment, but lost it on the way home.
“It flew away somehow,” Del Valle said. “I tore my car apart looking everywhere. I thought maybe I left it in the tax office, checking for it there. I was frantic.”
She said she didn’t expect to see the money again. So Del Valle was surprised to hear a knock on her door later that evening.
She said Sergio Juarez returned it after he found it underneath his car’s tire. The check had her name and address written on the back.
She ran inside to find some cash to give Juarez as a way of saying thank you. When she gave him $40 and told him to take his wife out for dinner, he replied that he’d be using the money for gas.
“When he said that to me, I realized he must be struggling and I asked him and he said he lives in the Motel 6,” Del Valle said.
She asked him for his name and how to find him, because she wanted to find a way to help him out. He told her he had lost his job and was living in the motel with his wife, three children, and another child he reportedly took in.
“I couldn’t sleep all night thinking about what to do,” she said. “I couldn’t believe that a person in that situation would care to do something so nice when he doesn’t even have money for gas.”
Del Valle decided to create a GoFundMe page to tell Juarez’s story. His act of selflessness resonated with others, and so far the page has raised nearly $18,000 for Juarez’s family.
“I reached out and told him what I had done,” Del Valle told Inside Edition. “His wife was in tears. Their kids are smiling for the first time in months. I told him you don’t need to thank me. I said this is my thank you for you doing the right thing.”
She said she’s also had people calling her to offer Juarez jobs. Restaurants have even offered meals to the family after hearing their story.
Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.