February 19, 1997 in Nation/World

Cabbie Handsomely Rewarded For Honesty He Returns Wallet, Gets $5,000, Fun-Filled Week

Associated Press
 

David Hacker had just finished his 10-hour shift driving a cab when he spotted a bulging alligator-skin wallet on the back seat.

It held $25,000 - what Hacker normally makes in a year.

“This is it,” Hacker thought, considering it a test from above.

A few years earlier, Hacker had made a promise to return the favor if God would help him through some health problems.

Hacker tracked down the owner and was rewarded with $5,000 in cash, food and clothes, and a whole week living the high life.

Credit cards in the wallet bore the name of Lance Dykes. Hacker believed it could have been a passenger he picked up from Bally’s. Sure enough, he found Dykes at one of the casino’s roulette wheels.

Dykes, 38, from Hinesville, Ga., said he had realized the wallet was missing but figured it was long gone.

“In Las Vegas, I just couldn’t believe someone would turn it in,” Dykes said Tuesday of his Feb. 11 encounter. “I must have told him ‘thank you’ a 150 times.” He also handed Hacker a wad of reward cash.

“Take the rest of the week off,” Hacker said Dykes told him. “You’re my guest.”

Hacker, 45, spent last week with Dykes, gambling with high rollers and eating lobster in an expensive suite. “It was the first time for me,” he said. “I’d never eaten lobster before.”

Hacker and his girlfriend were also treated to shopping, another gourmet meal and front-row seats at a Las Vegas show.

After Dykes left town Saturday, Hacker went back to his cab.

“It was a wild weekend,” he said. “I enjoyed the good life, but it’s nice to get back to reality.”

© Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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