Teen Finds Wallet with $1500. Rings Bell of Owner — Who’s Too Afraid of Strangers to Open Door

Can we say it again? Most people are good. Even the people who ring your doorbell. Here’s aittbkddzy
a teen who found a wallet with 00 in cash in it

As Inside Edition reports:

Tyler Opdyke, 18, found the wallet in the driveway of a home in Sacramento, Calif.

Surveillance video shows him approaching the home. The homeowner, Melissa Vang, didn’t want to open the door because he was a stranger.

So the teenager held the wallet to the camera to make sure she knew the money was all still there. He then leaves it by the front door.

“When I checked my video, he had walked away and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh that’s my husband’s wallet,'” she told Inside Edition. “It touched my heart that he would leave that much money.”

The owner posted the video and wrote about Tyler’s honesty on line, and it went viral. And now a little more viral! (It sure beats sharing the “My kids were almost sex trafficked” posts.) – L



Time to start trusting strangers some more.


24 Responses to Teen Finds Wallet with $1500. Rings Bell of Owner — Who’s Too Afraid of Strangers to Open Door

  1. Theresa Hall September 25, 2017 at 12:21 pm #

    To think she could been happily thanking this guy for finding the wallet if she just had chosen not to be such a great big scaredy cat. When my cat ran of at a rest stop the workers found her that night and soon I was thanking them for saving her while telling my kitty never to run off like that again not that she listened. When someone does something nice for you you want to thank them. It is polite and respectful and it is the the right thing to do.

    Being careful around strangers is one thing trying to run or hide isn’t the right thing to do.

  2. Myriam September 25, 2017 at 12:41 pm #

    I maybe get not wanting to open the door, but doesn’t she have a window she could look out of?

  3. Dafna September 25, 2017 at 12:57 pm #

    I came home one night at around 9pm and saw that my neighbors had left their car lights on. Knocked on their door, rang the bell, no one answered. Came out the next morning and saw them jump starting the car. When I told them I tried to let them know the evening before they told me that they don’t open the door past 8pm. Never thought of looking out the window.

  4. Dingbat September 25, 2017 at 1:24 pm #

    @ Dafna

    The number of people who report knocks at the door to police is astounding. They do not think anyone has the right or need to knock at their door in the age of cell phones, and they are not about to look outside and see who it is. It’s apparently the policies job to drive to their house and tell them, if anyone is still there by the time they make it out.

    99% of the time it’s a friend or family member.

    It makes you wonder how people ever functioned before cell phones. I can’t quite understand the paranoid behavior people started displaying after they became the norm.

    Parents who grew up without cell phones punishing their children for not texting back within 3 min. People trying to report family members as abducted because they are 20 min late when coming from work and not answering their cell.

    If you don’t immediately respond back it in the day of instant access it means you’ve been axe murdered.

  5. Melissa September 25, 2017 at 1:33 pm #

    It all comes back to free-range parenting, doesn’t it? Trying to regain an era when kids could wander the neighborhood and search for an available playmate by knocking on their door. Even more needed nowadays, when no one has a landline. I still make my kids do the door-knocking when they ask if they can go play with a friend, but d some of the parents send me annoyed texts saying the kids need to call first; but when I do that, my child ends up reaching an even-more-annoyed parent who is getting the call at work and barks at them that they don’t know if their kid can play or not, the other spouse is home with them or the grandmother. Landlines were great because kids could communicate directly at an age too tender for their own cell phone. I tell my kids that at 8 and 10, they are too old for Mommy to be arranging playdates for them. They can figure it out with their friends in advance and clear it with me for approval, or they can go door-to-door in a friend-finding mission. Slowly some of the neighbors are getting on board with us!

  6. Dingbat September 25, 2017 at 1:38 pm #

    Let’s not even go into the horrors of dating.

    What happens when you don’t text back within 2 min…

    Are you ok?

    Are you mad?

    Did I do something?

    Tell me what I did wrong?

  7. Jo September 25, 2017 at 2:29 pm #

    geez, how about focusing on the Good in this story?! The kid did a great and honest thing by returning the wallet and all of the money. No one knows what has happened in another persons life. The woman in the home may very well have had a reason to not open the door. heck, I don’t answer my own door most of the time and I have a built-in peep hole to look through! Mostly… it’s due to the fact that I have nothing on and choose to not shock the person who’s knocking. But, in all seriousness, she must have a reason for not opening her door. So, let’s focus on that young man with a good heart!

  8. Diane September 25, 2017 at 2:32 pm #

    I get being a little nervous about opening your door to a stranger, but I find ways to suppress my nerves and minimize risk. Someone might be knocking on my door to tell me my roof is on fire and I need to get out, or something like that.
    I had a little scare years ago. My door opens onto a patio, which then has a gate door. There’s no way to see who’s at the gate. I was home with a baby alone on a Saturday night when the bell rang. I went into the patio and asked who was at the door. The man said he was trying to visit one of my neighbors but couldn’t remember which house it was, and could I tell him? I replied that I didn’t feel comfortable with that, maybe I could call her? He said no, it was kind of an emergency. (red flag went up) I asked, concerned, if maybe I should call emergency services instead?
    No answer. He immediately left my door. That kind of freaked me out but I managed to check my locks, call my husband who was en route home for reassurance, and refrain from calling the police. I checked on my neighbor who had no idea who it could’ve been.
    And I still answer when someone rings the bell, even if I don’t open the gate right away.

    Poor lady. I hope that by her making the video public that the young man feels indirectly thanked, at least.

  9. Nicole R. September 25, 2017 at 4:05 pm #

    Great kid! And one more real-life experience to make this homeowner feel good about the world. 🙂

  10. Donald September 25, 2017 at 6:01 pm #

    It’s rare to hear good news! In fact, some people have play an endless loop of tragedy in their head over and over 24/7 for several years! When they see good news, (a kid wanting to return $15.000) their default setting is THIS MUST BE RAPIST LURING ME WITH BAIT!

    I exaggerate the point but not by much. Many people have a default setting of interpreting any event as bad news.

  11. AmyP September 25, 2017 at 7:36 pm #


    Hurts in the workplace too. If you have a company issued cell phone, it’s like they expect you to see and answer emails and texts immediately. Then they give you laptops too. This is nice on the one hand because you have flexibility on where to work from. On the other hand it’s like you have no excuse ever to get something done right this minute. Maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but sometimes it doesn’t feel like it. I get being on call and will always answer my phone because it may be urgent. But seems like in these days of instant access, the definition of urgent has changed, no matter who it is trying to reach you or why.

  12. JJ September 25, 2017 at 7:42 pm #

    Yeah I don’t open the door either. Years of living in the training ground for every possible political cause and the biweekly religious solicitation.

  13. lollipoplover September 25, 2017 at 7:55 pm #

    My neighbor had an emergency this summer and came knocking on our door (no adults home), and my 16 year-old son was able to run down to their house and help them so that they didn’t need to call 911 (wheelchair-bound senior fell out of chair).

    We didn’t even know about him helping until these neighbors came up with a gift card to thank him, he never told us! Despite all of the bad news being reported, most people are good and willing to help a neighbor.

  14. Heather September 25, 2017 at 8:13 pm #

    Thank you for being a rare voice of empathy and reason!

    I have to admit that sometimes I freeze and hide quietly when someone rings my bell in the middle of the day. Because it is ALWAYS a Jehovah’s Witness or, within the past few months, a local politician running for mayor!

  15. Dolly September 25, 2017 at 10:00 pm #

    I typically don’t open the door to strangers either but its for many reasons besides fear. I don’t want to deal with random people when I am at home busy doing something else. But in this case I would have talked to him through the door and when he said he had my husband’s wallet and showed it, of course I would open the door.

  16. Kirsten September 26, 2017 at 9:23 am #

    As a rule I wouldn’t open the door to a stranger unless I can see what they are saying is true. So if I looked through the peehole and the kid had my wallet I would open. But just claiming he had it wouldn’t be enough. The first thing the public says when someone is attacked is, “But why did she open the door? That just wasn’t common sense.”

  17. Crazy Cat Lady September 26, 2017 at 9:43 am #

    It has never occurred to me to NOT open the door. Granted, it is pretty rare that I get people knocking. But if someone is at my door it is usually (in this order) a kid who wants to play with my kids, a neighbor who needs help with something like a lost dog, stuck in snow or such, or some random vendor or person trying to convert me. The last one is really rare, I think they are getting more wary of meeting strangers too.

  18. Crazy Cat Lady September 26, 2017 at 9:44 am #

    Actually, not so rare. At least 5 to 8 times a week it a kid wanting to play with my son.

  19. it's me September 26, 2017 at 9:55 am #

    I just don’t open the door because in my neighborhood it’s ALWAYS someone trying to sell something. And they’re pushy.

  20. Eric S September 26, 2017 at 10:50 am #

    Ignorance is NOT bliss. “Stranger danger” mentality is ignorant. There are considerable draw backs to thinking EVERY “stranger” is bad.

  21. lrh September 26, 2017 at 12:02 pm #

    This is one of my pet peeves, people who overdo the idea of their home being a “fortress” and so you have to make an appointment with them like you’re going to the dentist. Gee whiz. Not only that besides thinking you have to call first, even then they don’t answer the phone.

    I give it to this teen because if it had been me I’d left a note saying “I have your wallet & I’m trying to return it to you I’m not a freaking crook for Pete’s sake. Get off your lazy ass and answer your door if you want your money back.”


  22. Mari Inshaw September 26, 2017 at 1:46 pm #

    I just want to mention why some people can’t look out the window… screens. We had new windows put in and they replaced the screens. Later when I wanted to look out the 2nd floor window to see what some commotion was about I discovered I could not poke my head out of the window because the new screens covered the whole window space.. My old screens, as worn and holey as they were could be moved so I could stick my head out.

    Yes, I also live in a neighborhood where we have bands of JWs, SJWs, politicians, beggars, and all sorts come knocking at the door. Most of the time I do answer the door because there is a locked iron security door between us, and I have practiced saying no, in the nicest ways to all who stopped by, letting them have about 1 minute of spiel before I shut them down. I answer because sometimes my neighbors are at the door and they come with an opportunity for fun, food or good info.

  23. Dora September 27, 2017 at 8:42 am #

    When I was 12 ish, I went bikeriding with my dog. The dog had been previously mistreated and was scared, to some extent of humans, but mostly of other dogs. At some point, another dog rushed out of a house and my dog fled. I drove around looking for her for a while but didn’t find her, so I returned to the house with the “scary” dog and rang the doorbell. I let the lady know her dog had scared mine away and I now needed her help. Seemed logical to me and she didn’t disagree. I used her phone to call home and i think (my memory is vague at that point) that my mom looked out and told me our dog had run home.
    In any case, i had to think of that when i read this. Don’t know what I would have done if the lady hadn’t opened, probably driven home, but the idea that she could somehow not let me in and use her phone, that would have been so odd. I am glad of the way I grew up when I read that. Nonetheless, I didn’t go driving around houses with my dog and no leash again.
    A few years ago, this was in Germany, my then 8 year old came back with my then 5 year old from the playground (not the one down the street, the cool one, where you had to walk a little further); my 5 year old was limping and sporting a big bandage on his knee. He had fallen and skinned his knee. 8 yo said a lady had offered to bandage it, but 5 yo had at first not wanted to go because they weren’t supposed to follow strangers. However, he had told his younger brother it was ok because it wasn’t a house, but some doctors practice, something about feet (their aren’t so many nail salons in Germany but if you have a lot of calluses ir something like that, you can go to a medical foot spa, which is what the place was).
    That was good right mom, he asked? I had never discussed particular exceptions to stranger rules, just told the kids not to follow strangers anywhere, into their cars, their houses, or whatever, if ever a stranger did ask. Same way, they shouldn’t stand up close to strangers talking to them and scream loudly if anyone tried to touch/grab them. I thought he showed good thinking though. I mean, I was warned about strangers but didn’t have second thoughts asking to use the lady’s phone. I think if you explain to kids what you are worried about: very rarely there could be people wanting to harm kids, so use good judgment, then they are able to take sound decisions and decide when and how these rules apply.

  24. Dawn October 7, 2017 at 5:41 am #

    I’d like to say to this teen’s parents that they’ve done a good job in raising him. Tyler could’ve easily taken the money but what he did was right. I like what he said in the interview, “I’m getting so much exposure over something everybody should do.” That means he’s really a nice kid thinking everybody in this world should do the same. Can’t blame the homeowner for not opening the door immediately. Sharing the video online is a nice move too. It inspired a lot of people especially the young ones. And it proved that honesty is not dead. We need more of these stories.