Good News

Remember when Walter Cronkite reported the nightly news and there was actually good stuff on TV? Remember when you watched news reports and didn’t need Tums afterwards?

No, I’m not saying the national news back then was always sunshine and Hershey’s bars, but it wasn’t all nuclear explosions, either.

Each weeknight Walter Cronkite appeared on your screen, hair slicked with axle grease, shirt pressed within an inch of its fibers, speaking in a voice that sounded like the Midwestern version of God. He’d cover topics ranging from exciting lunar launches, to Willie Nelson playing a concert at the White House.

And when the broadcast was over, Cronkite would sign-off with the same words:

“And that’s the way it is.”

Today, however, you don’t see good news on TV. Not even a little. You see talking heads chewing the same proverbial cud. The worst part is, the television people lead you to believe that goodness in this world is about as rare as a purple carrot.

Well, I recently discovered that this notion is pure bull.

It all started yesterday when I discovered I lost my wallet. The truly frightening thing was that on this specific day, my billfold contained a lot of cash, which is a rarity for me.

I never carry cash. In fact, on any given day my wallet will contain dryer lint, faded Chinese restaurant receipts, old poker chips from Biloxi, and cryptic notes I’ve written to myself which are illegible. But I never carry cash.

Even so, this particular afternoon I had six hundred dollars tucked in my billfold. And I misplaced it.

I immediately became nauseous. I started slapping my pockets like a guy whose Levi’s were on fire.

“My wallet,” I said in the privacy of my truck, achieving the pitch of a mezzo-soprano. “I’ve lost my wallet!”

My wallet is pretty hard to miss. I’m like most males, my wallet weighs at least fourteen pounds. I often have a bulging back pocket about the size of a cinder block. Whenever I sit down I am actually taller than when standing up.

It’s amazing how the brain works in moments of stress. No sooner had I discovered my wallet was missing than I was on my knees, frantically tearing apart sofas, crawling inside laundry hampers, sifting through drawers. I was searching for my billfold in household locations I haven’t visited in years, such as, say, the china cabinet.

At one point my wife, who didn’t yet know my wallet was missing, found me in the bathroom, combing through the contents of a wastebasket, garbage scattered on the floor like I was working on a jigsaw puzzle.

WIFE: Um. What’re you doing?

ME: Looking for six hundred dollars.

I searched my truck, dug under my seats, and inspected the floorboards. When I came up short, I sped through town, retracing my route from earlier that day.

I stopped at the filling station. No dice. I revisited the hardware store. Nada. I popped into the library. Bupkis.

I went to the supermarket and talked with the gal behind the customer service counter, a high-schooler named Marla. Marla had the amiable personality of Sheetrock.

“You lost your wallet?” Marla said, snapping her gum.

“Yes. I thought maybe someone here might’ve found it.”

“Where did you lose it?”

“Well, if I knew that I wouldn’t be here.”

“So, what, you think someone here found your wallet?”

“I’m hoping someone turned it into lost and found. Yes.”

Marla cracked her gum again, louder this time. “This wallet. Was there a lot of money in it?”


“It’s not here.”

After a day spent turning the county upside down, I finally accepted that my situation was bleak. I got home, collapsed on the sofa, and called my credit card company to cancel my cards. I was more than a little distraught, and I felt like a Class A idiot.

Then something happened.

At the exact moment I was on the phone with my bank, painstakingly explaining my situation to a customer-service representative who spoke less English than a Volkswagen, I heard a knock on our door.

There, on my front stoop, beneath the glow of our dim porchlight, stood a young man holding a leather billfold. His name was Chad.

“Are you Sean?” Chad asked.

I could have kissed Chad on the forehead.

The industrious young man said he found the wallet in a parking lot, then used his GPS to look up the address on my driver’s license. Then—get this—Chad actually clocked out of work early to deliver the wallet to me.

I asked why anyone would do such a kindhearted thing.

“Because,” Chad said, “I know what it feels like to lose a wallet. It sucks.”

I tried to pay him for his trouble, but he refused. Instead, we shook hands, leaned in for a typical guy hug, and slapped each other’s backs firmly enough to dislodge bronchial matter.

So the next time someone tells you this world is full of nothing but tragedies, hatred, and heartless self-seeking morons who don’t care about humanity, please tell these people about Chad.

And that’s the way it is.


  1. Leland Locke - November 4, 2021 9:23 am

    Good for Mr. Chad – and you! Remember: the limelight scares the Good Guys. And the bad guys, well, are afraid of the dark.

  2. Sandi. - November 4, 2021 9:30 am

    It’s honest people like Chad who continue to restore one’s faith in mankind. Sean, you really are fortunate that he found your wallet and returned it intact. What a blessing! Hopefully Chad reads your post and is reminded of his good deed!

  3. Karen Erwin-Brown - November 4, 2021 10:17 am

    Hurrah for the Chads of the world.

  4. Steve Winfield (Lifer) - November 4, 2021 10:54 am

    I hope you have him one of your books.

    • Paula - November 5, 2021 4:41 am

      I recently bought a Tile on Amazon to put on my key ring. This was the best money that I have been in a long time it works to find my keys or find my phone when you download the Tile app you can also get it in a credit card like thing to place in your billfold and once you install the app you can find your billfold or your keys or phone or whatever you have it attached to. Just use your phone to locate the item or press the card or tile fob and it finds it for you. WOW something that really works and is worth every penny I spend on it. My grandson bought the wine that goes in your wallet he lost his wallet while on his four wheel hunting and was able to find his wallet with his phone telling him where it was located. Great product

  5. Dianne DeVore - November 4, 2021 11:00 am

    We need more stories likes yours, because there is a lot of good out there to negate the bad. We just don’t hear enough of the good. Thank you!

  6. Linda Clayton - November 4, 2021 11:00 am

    I lost my wallet several years ago on a vacation in Canada. I was devastated over the loss of money, etc. And afraid I would have trouble getting back in the US without proof of citizenship. Fortunately, I had made copies of all it contained and had no trouble on re-entry to the states. Two weeks after returning home I received a package in the mail which contained my wallet and all its contents.i gratefull rewarded the man who found it. Yes, there are “Chads” everwhere.

  7. beckysimonsfarm - November 4, 2021 11:10 am

    There are many good people on this world. They just dont brag on us.

  8. Christine - November 4, 2021 11:42 am

    Yes, there are still a LOT of good people in the world that will go the extra mile to bless and do a good deed for a stranger. God bless these wonderful ones. Thankful you got your wallet returned.

  9. Lavenda - November 4, 2021 11:47 am

    Great story Sean. Thank you.

  10. Suellen - November 4, 2021 11:54 am

    We really do need to turn off the TV. They seem to be doing nothing but try to turn us against each other. When I look at the people around me I see nothing but kindness. I walk with a cane now and shopping and navigating the stores can be a pain (literally). I noticed again when going to the hardware store this week how many people jumped up to help me open doors and lift the heavy things. I must look really feeble because people fall over themselves to help me. Most people are good kind hearted people. We need to find that out again. Thanks for helping lead us there.

  11. Kate - November 4, 2021 11:54 am

    There are so many wonderful, wonderful people in this world, they are just not on the nightly news. That is why I quit watching years ago. I prefer to read Sean of the South

  12. Carol Klabunde - November 4, 2021 12:08 pm

    Forever and ever there have been 90% good people and 10% bad. Now the glorified news just concentrates on the 10% bad-blowing the bad up out of proportion. We all need to concentrate and promote the good because that will make it VERY good!

  13. bud mclaughlin - November 4, 2021 12:11 pm

    Sean, you are part of the good news for me. Your columns bring a smile, tear or pensive thought to me. Thank you.

  14. Paul McCutchen - November 4, 2021 12:13 pm

    I found an appointment book one time full of business cards. I call the number on the business card and the lady told me her boss wasn’t in the office. When I told her what I had found she got quiet. “He really needs that book” she said quietly. I told her I found it on the street and that I was on vacation. I gave her my number and in a few minutes he call my room. He came and picked up the book and told me his life was in that book.This was some time ago because now everything is kept in your phone. He gave my little brother and I $10 apiece for picking everything up and putting all of it in a paper bag. In 1965 we had money to burn in Daytona Beach.

  15. Jo Ann - November 4, 2021 12:25 pm

    Thank you, Sean, for reminding us about all those good, honest, people in the world. I do remember Walter Cronkite. He delivered the news without bias. Don’t we wish for someone like him today.

  16. Nick Nichols - November 4, 2021 12:30 pm

    If you want good news, try Raymond Orroya’s ‘The World Over Live’ Thursday nights on EWTN. Just celebrated their 25th anniversary.

  17. Happy Home - November 4, 2021 12:46 pm

    I’ve had that happen several times in my life, both as finder and receiver. Feels really good when I’ve helped, and feels really good when I’ve been helped. Great story.

  18. Shelton A. - November 4, 2021 1:00 pm

    There are a lot of good people in the world and a lot of good news that could be reported each day, but that doesn’t sell ad space or commercials. These days, most people who watch the news watch it with an agenda. That’s why I stopped. I can’t watch the news anymore. Because no matter who you watch or what news network, too many news ‘analysts’ are providing a slant on the news from one side or the other. Enough! Cronkite, Huntley and Brinkley, those were times and people who reported the news. No slant. Just the news, both good stuff and the bad without twisting it to fit an agenda. I really miss those days. Thanks for reminding us of good people and good news. We owe you one.

  19. Nancy Crews - November 4, 2021 1:04 pm

    ♥️your writing. That’s the way it is.

  20. Bev Mallatratt - November 4, 2021 1:08 pm

    I had a similar situation. I also never have cash but I had taken out money to go on vacation. I stopped in Target for a few things and in the hustle at the self checkout left my wallet. I didn’t realize it until an hour later when I was trying to pay my dog groomer. I contacted the store and was told someone had returned it to lost and found. I was so thankful when I got there and opened my wallet to find all of the cash still there. I wish I knew what kind person did this for me. There are so many kind people out there. These are the things we should celebrate.

  21. Jan - November 4, 2021 1:15 pm

    I just love a happy ending! Thank you, Sean. There are so many truly good people in this world and we need to be reminded of that often.

  22. Joni - November 4, 2021 1:17 pm

    I recently subscribed to your blog and I love it! I have this image of the inside your brain looking like one of those word clouds jam packed with ideas and.. words! I live in Dayton Ohio, the home town of the late great writer Erma Bombeck, and your writing reminds me of a modern take of her view of the world.

  23. Laura - November 4, 2021 1:19 pm

    You are so right! It has happened to me more than I care to admit! Most of us want to do the right thing because it just feels good! Thanks for sharing!!

  24. Arelene Mack - November 4, 2021 1:32 pm

    You are SO RIGHT! There ARE many good things, and many good people, in this world and we don’t focus on them enough. Chad – I hope your kindness returns to you a thousand-fold and to your family as well. I miss Walter Cronkrite – THE news voice from my youth.

  25. Patricia Gibson - November 4, 2021 2:02 pm

    There are still a lot of good people in the world and I stopped watching main stream media. Mostly lies and distortions anyway. So glad you got your wallet back and God bless Chad

  26. Edith Reed - November 4, 2021 2:16 pm

    What a relief! I’ve known that feeling several times. Many years ago I had a small electronic organizer when they first came out. I left it at a restaurant, and when I went back the receptionist had it. Relief! Several years ago I left my iPhone in the basket at the grocery store. When I went back an hour later, someone had turned it in. Relief! And gratitude! And neither time did I know the person to thank. And I have been that person to turn in something, knowing what a relief it would be to get it back. I think there are quite a few good people in this world.

    I disagree about the news and that all it does is report the bad. I don’t have cable. I only use an antenna. But I know a number of years ago when people accused the news of having only bad things to report, they started throwing in a good story here and there. And now they always close with a feel-good story. A real feel good story not a made up one. So I wonder, when people complain about the news and that there’s only bad news on the news, if they just read what somebody else said about that or if they actually watch the news every day. Because I watch the news every day. And there is reporting, and I mostly watch ABC, about goodness in the world every day. Maybe we’re just immersed in and focused on the bad that we don’t notice.

    Next time you watch the news, at least from an antenna on the local station, keep an eye out for it. They report good news. There are lots of Chads out there.

    • Estelle - November 7, 2021 1:35 am

      That’s why we watch ABC news with David Muir The program always ends with a good
      News story or like last week he went to Madagascar to do a story on the starving people of that island. There is no water. No rain for years. They can’t grow food. That little story caused people to open their hearts and pocket books and hundreds of thousands of dollars are going to the organization that is bringing water and food to the people. Come to think of it, that is a good news story.

  27. Kathy L. Mayer - November 4, 2021 2:27 pm

    Wonderful story…..thank you Sean for some uplifting news!!

  28. Susie Flick - November 4, 2021 2:44 pm

    I didn’t find a lost wallet but a woman’d tax returns. They were in a large brown envelope (like all important papers) in the middle of my street as I backed my car out. It’s a semi busy street across from a large church. This was a Sunday and a woman who went to a church down the road lost them. I called her and she had put them on top of her car after church to get in her car. She was driving to meet friends for lunch and the envelope fell off in front of my house. She lived in a smaller town about 30 miles away. I took them to her after work on that Monday. She wanted to give me a tour of the senior housing she lived in but first asked me a question. “Do you know how to fold up this ironing board?” I showed her now to fold it up and then we went on a tour of the facility. Nevil and I became “letter” friends and communicated for about 6 years. Then I sent a Christmas note and never heard from her. The next year, her son sent me a note to let me know she had passed away that past year. He had noticed our snail mail communication and wanted to let me know. I was blessed to know Nevil those 6 or so years.

  29. Tom Wallin - November 4, 2021 3:08 pm

    Yo Chad. You are Da Man! Very nice job.

  30. Bill - November 4, 2021 3:32 pm

    I’ve had this happen to me a time or two. BNot always was it my wallet, but sometimes i\ it was something important. Thanks God for the Chads in this world.

  31. Cathy - November 4, 2021 3:44 pm

    What a great way to start this day! It is a terrible feeling to lose anything of value, but a wallet is the worst. Since I became a senior citizen, losing things is just a part of my day. I spend way too much time looking for my phone snd my reading glasses. I think all your followers enjoyed today’s encouraging message. These days we need to hear stories abt.the good guys because they are still out there and you are one of the CNN good guys❤️

  32. Cathy - November 4, 2021 3:46 pm

    Not cnn! That was a senior mid type😂

  33. Lacie Maynard - November 4, 2021 3:53 pm

    Now that is good news! I will never forget who Walter Cronkite was…I remember many times sitting about the dinner table, ratting out one of my siblings, and my Mother said, “Thank you Walter Cronkite”. In other words, “Mind your own business”.

  34. Lulu - November 4, 2021 4:07 pm

    Sean, about 20 yrs ago I had been in Texas taking care of my mother. When I arrived at home in Wisconson I stopped at the grocery store. When I finished shopping returned home and discovered I had no billfold. I apparently had dropped it as I had gotten into my car leaving the store. I called the store, identified my billfold and a stranger had picked it up in the parking lot and turned it in…contents intact. I had almost a thousand dollars cash in it from my trip and of course credit cards, etc. All the important stuff. Thank God for honest people. Love people like Chad and there are lots and lots of them. My young son found a beautiful man’s watch when we were flying home to the USA from Germany. He returned the watch to its owner…Mannix of TV fame. I love honesty!

  35. Vivian - November 4, 2021 4:24 pm

    Several years ago, after unloading groceries at Kroger, I failed to remove the last item in the cart – my purse. I was several busy-traffic blocks from the store when I realized it wasn’t in the passenger seat as was usual. It was both panic time and “hammer time.” First, I found a place to pull over and inspect the back of my car where the groceries were. Nope, not there. I drove all the way back to the store, heart pounding and knowing it would be too easy for a probable less-than-upstanding individual to see in an empty cart. I parked, and not too well at that, and rushed in to inquire about the thing that contained the things that govern my life – identification, what little money I had left, spare keys. bank card, and Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit gum. The woman behind the counter reached underneath and said,”I believe this is yours, then.” I looked inside and everything, including the gum, was there. I said, “Can you tell me who brought it in?” She said, “No, but it was a young lady wearing a Christian t-shirt.” She paid it forward because I have taken two purses into stores from carts in parking lots. I’ve always wished one of them could have been hers. I did, though, finally learn the simple lesson my mother taught me years before that I had left unheeded. When you get to your car and unlock it to load groceries, say to yourself, “PURSE FIRST.” When finished loading, remove the purse and close the door. Escort the purse to its usual place in the passenger seat. You may even want to buckle it up.

  36. jeffkempe - November 4, 2021 4:27 pm

    As always, thank you, Sean!

    The first website I visit every morning is Glenn Reynolds’ Instapundit. (It’s from him I first got your link; been with you since. You remind me of Raymond Carver.)

    Late yesterday he posted a simple “Sarah Hoyt needs help” and a link to her Go Fund Me account. Sarah takes the late night/early morning shift. Like you, she’s a terrific writer and, by all accounts, a terrific person. She’s had serious health problems caused largely by living in high altitude Denver and needs to move. She’s struggling to finish remodeling her house so she can sell it, and it’s wiped her out.

    Her friends insisted she set up the GFM account. Her goal was set at $50k; she hoped to reach half that in two weeks.

    Instead the entire goal was reached in…two hours. By this morning over 1600 people had donated nearly $106,000.

    Yep. Lots and lots of good people out there.

  37. Stacey Patton - November 4, 2021 4:59 pm

    Thank you, Sean, as always. Sean was an angel, sent by God to help you. I especially loved your angel stories. The Bible even tells us that angels protect and help us. Whenever I lose something, which is often, I ask my Heavenly Father to help me, and He always does. God always bats a thousand.

  38. Stacey Wallace - November 4, 2021 5:03 pm

    Sorry, that should have been, “Chad was an angel…” This retired English teacher should have proofread before posting.

  39. Rhett Talbert - November 4, 2021 5:19 pm

    Really enjoy your daily column/ post/ ruminations, but especially today’s. I grew up eating family suppers, watching the back of my Dad’s head, as he typically turned in his chair to face Walter Cronkite’s evening news broadcast, behind him, on the “family room” TV. I think the back-&-forth between Huntley and Brinkley confused him, and he wrote off Harry Reasoner as a likely Communist. But he was a Cronkite devotee until the night Walter expressed doubt – on his newscast – about whether we really had any business in Vietnam. Then he went into a TV news vacuum until decades later, when he got a bad-enough case of shingles that he had to stay home from work. That’s when he complained on the phone to me that, with nothing to do but watch TBS Headline News all day, he was shocked to learn that they just ran “the same damn stories” every hour or so. Years later, he became a Fox News devotee, until they started running trailer text across the bottom of the screen. Because it didn’t match the audio of the broadcast, he thought that was “unnecessarily confusing.
    I, too, have several times lost my wallet – not so much in recent decades – and once, with a wad of cash jammed inside. Also returned, but from the floor of a McDonalds, by a minimum-wage kid who wouldn’t accept any reward. I watched the place for several days until I saw him behind the register, then went in to order a burger & Coke. Put a $50 bill in his hand, told him not to say a word, thanked him again and left.
    That’s just the way it was.

  40. Sue Fullmer - November 4, 2021 5:33 pm

    AND Chad is a TEENAGER! They also get a bad rap. I taught high school in Las Vegas Nevada and I’m here to say there are some great kids in charge of our future! Thanks for the positive spin.

  41. Kathie J Kerr - November 4, 2021 6:43 pm

    A few days ago I left my purse in a shipping cart at my local grocery store. It had my phone and everything in it. No one had turned it in shortly after returning from the store, a man walked up to my driveway with my purse. I gave him $10 but should have given him more. I do wish he had turned it into security at the store though cause on the way home I could barely see through my tears, but it ended ok.

  42. Linda Moon - November 4, 2021 8:59 pm

    The good news for me today is reading about Chad and a good check-up from the Veterinarian for one of my cats. Chad knew how to care about others and so did the Vet. I’ll tell other folks about Chad, my two Wondercats, and Sean Dietrich’s tale of a wallet returned…..because it’s all so good!

  43. MAM - November 4, 2021 9:53 pm

    So many of us have similar stories. One happened to us in a foreign country where we lived and my husband worked. He walked to work on nice days. That day I had given him a check for a substantial amount of dollars for him to take to the office and have it changed into the local currency. He called and said it must have blown out of his pocket. The next day the bank called the company and said a man had brought it in, because it was made out to that bank and endorsed by the company manager. Whew! So there are good people all over the world! P.S. another reason we don’t have TV!

  44. MAM - November 4, 2021 9:58 pm

    And my husband coming out of the post office one day spotted a credit card on the floor. He picked it up, looked at it, and knew the person it belonged to. He called her when we got home. She was thrilled, because she had madly been looking for it. So what are the odds that the person who found it knew the person it belonged to. Yes, we live in a smallish town, but still, we know God had a hand in that one.

  45. Christina - November 4, 2021 11:11 pm

    The worse and the best all in one day! God bless all the Chads out there👍

  46. Suzanne Brantley - November 5, 2021 12:39 am

    This is so heartwarming at a time when good news seems so rare!!!

  47. Debbie g - November 5, 2021 1:22 pm

    Thankful for all the chads and Sean’s. In our life Love to us all

  48. MaryAnn A Dunham - November 7, 2021 2:14 am

    You’re right, Sean, there are still a lot of great people in this world. We just need to open our eyes and when we see them, to acknowledge their generosity, honesty, and thoughtfulness.
    I LOVED this one!!!

  49. Sonya Tuttle - November 8, 2021 7:52 pm

    When you want to se negative stuff, you will see it. However I prefer to see POSITIVE things!! Thanks for this reinforcement!

  50. Gayle Wilson - November 8, 2021 9:49 pm

    There are a lot of Chads out there. They may not be returning wallets, but they are bringing goodness to people who need it.

  51. MaryLu - December 7, 2021 1:32 pm

    Three times I have been called long distance (Florida to Colorado, South Dakota to Colorado, and Colorado 100 miles away) by a person who found a cell phone that I was listed either as “mom” or the first contact. Two of my sons and a brother. They all got their phones back. I left my amex card at a grocery store, someone turned it in. Lots of people I have met have similar Chad stories. Makes the heart feel good, doesn’t it?


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