sarah-darling

Homeless man on returning engagement ring: I was raised to be honest

Feb. 17, 2013 at 11:59 AM ET

Last week, Sarah Darling of Kansas City, Mo., left more than a little change behind when she dropped a donation in a homeless man’s cup. 

The cup belonged to Billy Ray Harris, 55, who had been sitting in his regular spot on the sidewalk. He didn’t notice that Darling had accidentally dropped her engagement ring in with the change until he packed up for the day.

Sarah Darling had tucked her engagement ring into her change purse the day she walked by Billy Ray Harris.

“When I finally decided to leave I got on my bike and dumped the change into my hand and there was the ring,” Harris told NBC’s Michelle Franzen.

Harris thought that the ring, a diamond and platinum sparkler, was a fake. Then he had it appraised.

“It was really worth some money,” Harris said. “Worth enough that he was ready to give me four grand right there on the spot.” Harris thought of taking the money, but said that his grandfather raised him to be honest. He knew in his heart he couldn’t take the money.

“I am not trying to say that I am no saint, but I am no devil either,” he said.

Sarah Darling and Billy Ray Harris hugged each other when they were interviewed by TODAY.

Darling realized a day later that the ring was gone. She immediately returned to Harris’ usual spot, and he was there waiting - with her ring.

“It was just such a feeling of loss when it was gone,” she told Harris. “I am eternally grateful to you.”

TOP