500K Check in Kettle released Salvation Army

Wow! Bell-ringers never had such an amazing Christmas treat delivered into their little red buckets.

An anonymous couple dropped a $500,000 check into a Salvation Army kettle Saturday — the most generous donation ever received by one of the charity’s sidewalk Santas.

The donors from the Minneapolis, Minnesota area alerted charity officials to be on the lookout for their contribution. But Rosemont city firefighters were unaware when a passerby quietly slipped the half million dollar check into their midst.


In a statement from the charity, the couple said they had once been so poor, they relied on food discarded by grocery stores to get by.

“You get to a point in life where it’s time to take care of others, the way you were taken care of,” the donors said.

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They hope their gift will encourage others to be more generous this holiday season.

The contribution, which crushed the national kettle donation record of $25,000, doesn’t appear to be linked to a famous anonymous donor in the same city. The Salvation Army dubbed that generous kettle-giver “Saint Grand” because of the donations of around $1,000 (a “grand”) left at multiple kettles in the area since 2011.

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Saint Grand’s pattern is the same, leaving bundles of crisp, new $100 bills. Last year, $10,000 was left this way in multiple drops at a single kettle, and $7,000 at others in the area. Over the weekend, four separate kettles received $1,100 gifts from the anonymous do-gooder.

With these, and the record donation, the local Salvation Army is well on track to collect their goal of $11.6 million this year.

(READ more at the Minneapolis Star Tribune)

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