Just two weeks before Christmas, Bobby Goodale had an “It’s a Wonderful Life” moment involving a large sum of cash.
And just as in that classic holiday film, there’s a happy ending.
In the film, the Uncle Billy character misplaces $8,000 in cash while chatting in a bank. Truth to tell, Old Man Potter, the bank president, finds it and keeps it.
In this case, Mr. Goodale, the chairman of the Board of Directors at Peconic Bay Medical Center, misplaced a bank envelope containing nine $100 bills at the Riverhead post office. And on Wednesday, a postal employee delivered the envelope, complete with all nine bills, to Mr. Goodale’s Flanders home.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Mr. Goodale said. “Now I owe something to the post office.”
After going to the bank to cash a $900 check, Mr. Goodale had headed to the post office to mail several hundred party invitations and 10 or so bill payments. He put the cash, still in an open envelope, and the bill payments on his front seat. When he reached the post office, he picked up two boxes holding the invitations and the other envelopes and, as he discovered later, the cash.
All of it went into the mail.
About an hour later he realized what had happened and went back to the post office, only to be told that all the mail had already been shipped up-island. A clerk took his name and number, but made no promises.
“It was in an open envelope with no name on it,” Mr. Goodale said. “It could have ended up anywhere or someone could have walked off with it. I thought I had lost the whole thing.”
But the next day the post office called to say they’d found the money, and he had it back in his hands the day after that.
“What a nice Christmas present,” Mr. Goodale said. “It is a wonderful life.”