For years, Matthew and Maria Colonna-Emanuel thought a rusty metal box in their backyard was just some part of a cable or electrical box. They were very wrong. What was inside was worth much more than they could have ever imagined.
The couple, from Staten Island, New York, saw the rusty old box between some trees when they moved in several years ago, but never thought anything of it. However, when deer came around and ate away some of the trees, they could see it more clearly and wanted to see what it was. They still thought it was just an old cable box or something useless.
After digging it up, they realized it was actually a rusty old safe — and not an empty one. Inside they found wet money and plastic bags filled with jewelry.
“Hundreds, jewelry, diamonds, engagement ring. Dozens of rings, gold with Jade. It was stunning,” said Matthew.
It also contained a piece of paper with one of their neighbor’s address. They asked the neighbors if they were ever robbed and they said they were. In 2011, a burglary was reported in the neighbor’s home the day after Christmas. The only thing that was taken was a safe and it was worth about $52,000.
“The cops told her, you’ll never see your stuff again,” said Matthew’s wife, Maria.
But eight years later, she did. The neighbor was shaking when they told her they found the safe and she asked why they didn’t just keep it. She was so shocked to have her jewelry and money be returned to her.
Matthew and Maria never thought twice about giving the safe back to their neighbors — they said it wasn’t even a question, because it wasn’t theirs to begin with. They also said their reward is good karma.
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