Between what's reported in the 24-hour news cycle and what we see get shared on social media, it feels like everyone hates each other and we're on the brink of the end of civilization. But, there are still a lot of good people in the world, and one of them showed up at the Easterseals Rehabilitation Center in Evansville on Monday to give their annual holiday donation. Who is this person? It's a great question that no one, not even longtime employees of the Rehab Center, knows the answer to.

Easterseals Mystery Donor, "Pete," Leaves Another Large Cash Donation

For the 33rd consecutive year, a person who calls themselves, "Pete," made their way to the Rehab Center and hid another cash donation on the property. And just like the previous 33 years, he manages to do it without anyone knowing until after the deed is done. See, Pete likes to make a little game out of it by disguising it as a Christmas gift and hiding it somewhere on the Rehab Center property then calling the Center after he's left to give them some clues on where to find it. How he (if it is indeed a "he") has managed to do this for all these years without being caught on security cameras is beyond me, but here we are.

And by the way, each year's donation is given in cash, so there's no paper trail to find out who the mystery giver is. Pretty clever, Pete, pretty clever.

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This year was no different. After getting the call, Easterseals staff members followed Pete's clues and found a gift bag hiding in a tree.

Easterseals Rehabilitation Center
Easterseals Rehabilitation Center

Inside the plain white gift bag was a smaller drawstring bag with Pete's signature handwritten note that reads, "You will hear from me again," which would sound ominous in any other context, and a large wad of $100 bills.

Easterseals Rehabilitation Center
Easterseals Rehabilitation Center

While you can't see it all in the picture above, that is 30 - $100 bills — a.k.a. $3,000 — bringing Pete's grand total up to $106,450.

Pete's One Stipulation

There is one catch to Pete's donation, but it's one the staff at the Rehab Center happily agrees to. Each year Pete asks that the money be used to buy Christmas gifts for the disabled children from disadvantaged families served by Easterseals.

There's a part of me that wants to know who Pete is and if the Pete who left the cash on Monday is the same Pete who did it the first time in 1990. What if the original Pete is no longer with us, but someone who knew him/her/them is carrying on the tradition in their name?

With that said, there's also part of me that doesn't want to know and hopes we never find out. Obviously, whoever it is isn't looking for any special recognition. They're just a person who is putting the needs of the kids ahead of their own personal glory, and I respect the hell out of that.

So, whoever you are, Pete, keep up the great work, and thanks for showing the rest of us that even in what feels like dark times, there are those among us still providing a little light.

[Source: Easterseals Rehabilitation Center]

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