Homeless man rewarded for returning lost cash

John Kavanaugh

A Homeless man’s honesty for turning in a fist full of cash he found on a West Chester street paid off on Thursday.

He is the homeless guy who did the opposite of what you would think a guy down on his luck would do.

50-year-old John Kavanaugh was rewarded for turning in the bundle of cash he found on a West Chester street last month.

“You’re a good man, and you returned the money without hesitation. Every penny was there. You saved my skin,” Robert Stauffer told Kavanaugh Thursday afternoon.

Robert Stauffer is the Pottstown lawyer who lost the $1,440 in cash when he stuck it in his jacket pocket, a pocket that had a hole in it.

Stauffer not only gave Kavanaugh a portion of the findings, which will be secured by an area shelter, he also says he plans to make an effort to get Kavanaugh off the street for good.

“He’s got a lifestyle,” said Stauffer. “That’s what he’s been doing, and sometimes it’s difficult to pull them out of that lifestyle. Sometimes it’s almost impossible. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t all treat him with a little respect.”

When we say John Kavanaugh is homeless, we mean he is homeless in every sense of the word.

Police say sometimes he sleeps in these bushes in front of the West Chester public library. Other times, police say he finds an unlocked car and sleeps there. Police believe he has been on the streets for more than a decade.

The officer on the case, coincidentally, went to high school with Kavanaugh.

Officer Harry O’Neill says Kavanaugh is a Marine who struggles with mental illness, and who seems to prefer his way of life.

“It’s a lifestyle he’s adapted to, whether he can withdraw from that lifestyle, hopefully that happens, but there are no guarantees,” said Officer Harry O’Neill.

Kavanaugh’s family has told police they gave up trying to fix whatever is broken in his life. Perhaps it will be different this time.




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