Shopper Esther Daniel made a discovery in a Walmart parking lot that sparked a county-wide search. Later, she got a call from a local news station inviting her back to the grocery store. And the reason why was truly heartwarming.
One day in March 2018, resident Esther Daniel headed to Walmart in Raleigh, North Carolina, to pick up some groceries. But at the end of an otherwise unremarkable supermarket run the shopper came away with much more than just her food for the week.
Daniel noticed something out of place while she was in the parking lot. She saw that a fellow shopper had left two very special belongings behind. Not only were the items worth a lot of money, but they also had significant sentimental value too.
Daniel spotted a pair of diamond rings on the ground. Recognizing that someone out there would be very distraught about having mislaid them, the Good Samaritan scooped them up. After all, they were likely to be missed, and the shopper didn’t want them pocketed by someone unscrupulous.
So the kind-hearted shopper took it upon herself to take care of them. Daniel’s main aim was to ensure that she reunited the owner with the bejeweled rings. Firsly, she headed over to Walmart customer services to inform them of her discovery.
Daniel left her contact details with the desk, but that wasn’t all she tried in order to find the rings’ rightful owner. The honest shopper posted a message on a local moms’ Facebook group, but unfortunately that didn’t help her find the jewelry’s owner either.
Many might have given up at this point, but Daniel had one more idea. She got in touch with TV station ABC11 in the hope that the news channel could spread the word. It agreed to help and one of its reporters, Stephanie Lopez, tweeted an appeal.
But it was only when ABC11 broadcast the story on the news channel that progress was made. After the report went live, an early years school teacher from Raleigh came forward claiming the rings were hers. Her name was Shnita Horton.
Horton was able to verify that the lost rings were hers by showing a third band which made the full set complete. ABC11 was there to film the moment she was reunited with her lost jewelry, and it made for a heartwarming sight.
“I have no words, I have no words,” Horton said when Daniel gave her beloved rings back, adding, “Thank you. Thank you so much.” But for Daniel, it was no big deal. She never thought twice about making it her mission to find the owner.
“You’re very welcome. I’m glad I get to do this. I’m happy. I’m so happy,” Daniels said in reply. Meanwhile Horton’s husband, Robert, explained to ABC11 just how distraught his wife had been when she discovered that she had lost her wedding rings.
The delighted husband told ABC11, “She lost it and it was like her world fell apart. She was missing something more than a ring. It was like a piece of her was missing.” he said. But thanks to an honest member of the public, the story had a happy ending.
Daniel told ABC11 how her mom had always taught her to be honest, and that she had only recently been teaching her own son about having the right moral values. She said that “integrity is doing the right thing when no one is watching.” And that’s exactly what she did on this occasion.
While Horton was overjoyed and relieved to get her rings back, Daniel told ABC11 that she found the whole scenario “humbling.” She said she was only “doing what needed to be done,” adding that she’d like to think that anyone else would do the same.
But the story didn’t end once the rings were returned. When the reunion was broadcast on ABC11, it caught Walmart’s attention. The supermarket store then got in touch with the news channel. That’s because it wanted to reward Daniel for her good citizenship.
So ABC11 invited Daniel back to the Walmart store without telling her what was planned. The shop’s assistant manager, Salif Saidy, was waiting for her with a big surprise. “We just wanted to thank you for your honesty and for the good deed,” he began.
Saidy revealed that the store had a $500 gift card to give Daniel as a reward for her efforts in returning the weddings rings to Horton. The delighted shopper told the reporter that she was “excited” to receive the voucher as she stood smiling and holding a bunch of flowers and balloons.
The heartwarming story of the lost rings evidently touched the community. Even Saidy said that he was “emotional” when he heard about it. But probably no-one more so than Horton, who might never have seen the rings again if things had played out differently.
The star of the story, Daniel, had some sage parting advice for those watching the ABC11 report. “Never stop fighting for the right thing,” she said. “Keep on doing the right thing and don’t quit, because someone out there is depending on you.”
Indeed, Horton was left depending on someone to do the right thing, and thankfully, Daniel stepped up. Had the wrong person found the rings, they could have been gone forever. But thankfully for Horton, it seems Raleigh has its fair share of Good Samaritans.