Con Mitsos was devastated when he lost his wallet, containing a large amount of cash, only to be reunited with it a day later after a Shepparton couple found it and handed it in to police.JOHN LEWIS May 27, 2014 3:48am
Good things do happen while honest people walk the streets of Shepparton.
Just ask Con Mitsos.
A week ago, the retired Shepparton dairy farmer headed into the city with a wallet full of cash to pay bills, including funeral expenses for his father who had recently died.
Before settling his bills he had coffee with a cousin at a central Shepparton cafe — and found he couldn’t pay because his wallet was missing.
‘‘I went to take my wallet from the back pocket of my trousers and it wasn’t there. I was devastated,’’ Con said.
As well as the large amount of money, Con’s wallet also contained his bank and Medicare cards, his driver’s licence, a police check card for working with young people and a precious photograph of his daughter Vaia.
He spent the next five hours retracing his steps with no luck.
He eventually went to Shepparton Police Station to report the missing wallet and then began cancelling his cards.
‘‘I was exhausted, stressed and drained of all energy — my family were all affected by this,’’ he said.
‘‘I remember them saying to me, ‘It’s all okay, we will pull though. As long as we have our good health and we love each other that’s what counts’.’’
The next morning retired Shepparton teachers Lois and Brian Hardy had just taken their young granddaughter to Guthrie St Primary School when they came across a dull red wallet lying in the middle of the footpath on Lincoln Dve, south Shepparton.
‘‘It was wet, so it must have been out all night,’’ Brian said.
Lois said they found a card in the wallet with a phone number, but when they called, it turned out to be a fax number.
When they took it to Shepparton Police Station, a young policewoman counted out a wad of crisp new notes.
Constable Samara Dove said she did not see this sort of thing often.
‘‘It was lucky these particular people found it and that they were honest enough to hand it over,’’ Const Dove said. ‘‘It never entered our minds to do anything else. We’d be pretty poor Christians if we’d kept it,’’ Lois said.
Con said when he got the call to collect his wallet, he expected to find it empty.
‘‘I was absolutely stunned and lost for words — everything was in it — the high amount of cash towards funeral costs and so on,’’ he said.
There was no explanation of how Con’s wallet ended up several kilometres away from where he first noticed it missing.
When he met the Hardys for the first time yesterday, Con was lost for words.
‘‘What can I say? Whatever I say, it’s not going to be enough. It just shows, there are good people around,’’ he said.
Con has bought a new, smaller wallet — with room for just one $50 note inside.
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