LIRR conductor returns $9,000 in cash left on train by absent-minded rider
He saw something, said something — and then did something extraordinary, handing back a fat stack of Benjamins abandoned on a train seat.
Long Island Rail Road conductor Jerry Savino saved the neck of a careless rider who left $9,000 in cash on a rush hour train, explaining that he spotted a large folder on the overhead rack of a train out of Hempstead Thursday evening.
He opened the folder to make sure it didn’t contain anything dangerous, and found an envelope stuffed with a wad of 90 crisp $100 bills.
“We find things on trains every day,” said Savino, an 18-year LIRR veteran. “I saw a lot of paperwork, that was a clue that it probably wasn’t anything nefarious going on.”
Savino kept a close eye on the package until he handed off to Metropolitan Transportation Authority cops at Jamaica Terminal, who tracked down the its owner and were able to return the folder roughly two hours after it was left behind.
The press event itself to laud Savino was a show of faith for LIRR workers, who have been criticized by some MTA board members for engaging in rampant overtime fraud.
“This is a message that’s being missed," said Anthony Simon, general chairman of the Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Union, the largest of the unions that represent LIRR workers. “We do this every day. We safeguard. We take care of the riding public.”
LIRR president Phil Eng said Savino turning in the potentially life-changing bundle of cash was an example of the agency’s commitment to customer service.