Search for hidden cash
A LOCAL grandmother sparked a state-wide search last week after the two cushions in which she kept her life savings were accidentally donated to charity.
The cushions and the $25,000 in them were dropped off at the Salvation Army store in South Fremantle after a home clear-out in May.
When the North Coogee resident (76), who asked the Gazette not to reveal her name, realised her mistake a couple of weeks later she returned to the store. The cushions had been sold. “I’ve got a little bit of money in the bank which I use to pay my bills but this money was my security to help my kids if they needed anything desperately,” she said.
“I never ever touched it. It was there more like an inheritance really.”
The woman had kept the stash in two pale printed cushions for more than a year.
Keeping a portion of her money out of the bank was something she had done since the global economic crisis.
The accident was another sad chapter in her recent past, with her husband and aunt both dying in the past six years.
She said she was desperate to see the money returned.
“I’m just hoping someone will look at the cushion, see the money and be honest and let me have it back,” she said.
Because most of the cash was in $100 bills, the woman said it was largely unnoticeable when placed in the cushions.
It slipped her mind when she donated to the Hampton Road branch and went undetected by Salvos staff.
A Salvos spokeswoman said staff and volunteers quality checked donations to ensure they were in a sellable condition before they were placed on the shop floor.
“The store at which the cushions were donated receives lots of generous donations and therefore regularly distributes excess items to other stores in WA,” she said.
“The store manager has been in touch with all stores in WA advising them of the wrongly donated items and asked the store teams to keep an eye out for any similar donations.
“We hope the money can be returned in full to this woman and urge anyone who has bought the cushions to come forward and return it to the owner.”
A reward is being offered to see the money returned to the woman.