Homeless Man's Integrity Inspires Gifts, Donations

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A homeless man who returned a bag he'd found with thousands of dollars inside is being rewarded for his honesty.

Dave Tally recently found a backpack containing a laptop and more than $3,000. Rather than keeping the bag, he turned it in.

"Finding the envelope with all that cash was just mind-blowing," Tally said. "There's a lot of things I could have taken care of, but the fact of the matter was, it was not my money. I didn't earn it."

Since then, strangers have been repaying Tally's kindness with their own, giving money and other gifts. Workers at the Tempe Community Action Agency that who have helped Tally and other homeless in the area said it has been flooded with donations.

"I cried last night. It was really phenomenal. It brought tears to my eyes that people want to help someone out," Tally said. "I didn't think such a big deal would be made for someone just turning in a backpack."

Tally is a recovering drug addict and has been living on the streets since losing his home several years ago.

"I think it's going to change his life in ways that he doesn't even know yet," said Tempe Community Action Agency worker Stephen Sparks. "And $3,000 is one thing, but if he gets a job that pays 3,000 a month, it's going to come back ten fold."

Officials found the bag's owner, Arizona State University student Bryan Belanger, from a resumé stored on the computer's hard drive.

"It's hard to put into words, it's just overwhelming," Belanger, said. "It's just the greatest thing I've ever experienced, I think. It really is a lesson to keep your faith in people, and character exists, no matter what your circumstances are."

Tally hopes that his action inspires others to be honest and to do the right thing.

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