OWOSSO (WJRT) (1/16/2020) - An Ovid man found more than $43,000 in a secondhand store couch, but he couldn't keep it while knowing how much it would mean to the family that lost it.
An Ovid man found $43,000 in the cushion of thrift store furniture and returned it to the owner.
Howard Kirby found the bundles of cash inside the cushion of a used couch he purchased and he returned it to the owner on Thursday, even though he could use the money himself.
The money belonged to the Newberry family of Owosso. They met Kirby at the Habitat for Humanity ReSstore, where he bought the couch, and were surprised with the stash of cash.
"I know how it is to lose something and never get it back," Kirby said of returning the $43,170.
He paid just $70 for the entire furniture set. When he got it home, he said it didn't feel right and his daughter-in-law agreed, so she investigated.
"She opens it up and pulls it out and she says, 'Dad, money," Kirby said.
With thousands of dollars in cold hard cash in his hand, he started making a list of things he could do with the money.
"Everything just ran through my mind: Now i can pay off the house, I can get a roof on my house, and I can retire real good and everything," he said.
Kirby talked to a lawyer, who said he could legally keep the money. However, he said in that moment he turned to his faith.
"I'm a born again Christian, and what would Jesus do? Jesus would give it back to the rightful owner," Kirby said.
He got in touch with the Habitat ReStore and they located the Newberry family. They donated the couch last month after their grandfather passed away.
As tempting as it was to keep it, Kirby said he knows returning the money to its rightful owners was the right thing to do.
"I've heard about it happening before and i always thought, what would i do if i found that money? Now I know," he said. "Makes me feel good. I believe I'm doing the right thing."