Throughout the holiday season, the sound is ubiquitous: Salvation Army workers sitting outside pharmacies, supermarkets, and on busy sidewalks, ringing their bells to encourage passerby to drop change in their kettles to raise money for those in need. But after one very special donation on Wednesday, Boston’s Salvation Army chapter has a very different ring on their minds.
An anonymous donor dropped her diamond engagement ring and her late husband’s wedding band in the red Salvation Army kettle outside North Station on Wednesday, a gift appraised at $1850.
According to a report from the Boston Globe, Salvation Army officials were stunned by the generous gift.
“We were really taken aback,” said Lieutenant Michael Harper, commander of the Cambridge Salvation Army. “One, by such generosity of something that was a deeply sacrificial gift, and something that was probably priceless to her.
“In addition to money, I’ve seen watch batteries, paper clips, safety pins, all sorts of strange things, but this one takes the cake.”
In addition to the ring and band, which Harper said was the largest donation he’d ever seen dropped in a Salvation Army kettle, the donor left a note expressing her hopes that the ring would be sold for ten times its value to help the poor and needy.
“To honor his memory, I donate this ring. I’m hoping there’s someone out there who made lots of money this year and will buy the ring for 10 times its worth. After all, there’s no price on love or the sentimental value of this ring. But money will help the kids. May everyone have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!”
According to Harper, the Salvation Army does not usually handle donations like the ring, but are hoping to figure out a way to honor the donor’s request. Hopefully the non-profit can facilitate an auction or a charitable purchase from a particularly generous buyer.
According to the Globe, the donor’s note also featured a short proverb at the bottom: “To find out what a man is worth, take away his money and his possessions.”
What a way to ring in the holiday season.
[h/t Boston Globe; img via AP]