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Waitress Finds $32,000 Cash in Booth and Returns it

FRESNO (KFSN) A family accidentally left tens of thousands of dollars in cash at an Applebee's restaurant in Fresno.

An honest server turned it in when they found it.

Erika and Bertha Gonzalez walked into the Fresno Police Department to find the treasure they figured no one would ever return.

It took a cash counting machine to add up the $32,000  the mother and daughter mistakenly left in a booth at Applebee's.

The two made several stops wednesday, including a bank. they didn't originally plan on carrying the cash all day.

Wednesday, they realized the money was missing and were sick about it. The cash is savings from the family's businesses including rental properties and a Bay area restaurant.

Sammy Ashworth is the detective who first learned a large sum of money was found- then he got a call from the family.

They described the bag that it was in and the denominations and they determined yeah, it was their money, it was legally obtained and they were just an average working family that had made a mistake.

The server who waited on the family, and also found the money didn't want to talk about his good deed. in fact, Applebee's managers aren't even sure he will take any reward from the company or the Gonzalez family.

The Applebee’s Manager made it very clear that he did it because it was the right thing to do, not that he wanted anything in return.

There are no surveillance cameras in the area where the family was seated. Applebee's said that's all the more reason this employee's integrity is remarkable.

"That's a lot of money. That's more than a year's salary for many of our employees and to have the knee-jerk reaction immediately be 'let's find a way to get this back to who it belongs to,' I'm very fortunate," Carrie Hellyer/Applebee's Area Director said.

The Gonzalez family plans to thank the server and police for reuniting them with their vacation money and family savings.

 "I told them their next stop had better be the bank. Or at least somewhere safe where that money can be stored," Sammy Ashworth/Fresno Police Detective said.

 The family vacation to Puerta Vallarta and Guadalajara is now back on.

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