Honesty prevails as parking boy returns cash to owner
MANILA, Philippines – Ever wonder what was going on in the mind of 13-year-old parking boy Andrey Macabuhay when he saw P7,000 fall from a man’s pocket?
No, he did not think of bringing it home to give to his sick parents. The boy would not steal money to feed his family no matter how hard life is for them. Instead, Andrey, without hesitation, immediately returned the cash to the owner.
“Ibinalik ko po kasi hindi naman akin 'yong pera,” the timid boy told Rappler in a phone interview. (I returned the money because it did not belong to me.)
Did he think twice about giving the money back, Rappler asked Andrey. "No," he replied quickly.
Today, he is now known as the “honest parking boy” from Sta. Maria, Bulacan.
Fighting poverty at a young age
Andrey is the youngest of 6 siblings. His mother Angelita sells vegetables while his father stopped working due to an impaired vision. Andres Macabuhay has cataracts.
The Macabuhay family has to fight poverty every day but never seems to succeed in winning the battle. Because of the futility, Andrey too has to work for a living at a tender age of 13. “Nagtatrabaho po para makatulong sa magulang ko po,” he said. (I work to help my parents.)
He has found a "job" in parking lots and one day on August 20, he saw a bundle of money fall from the pocket of Dindo Lorenzo.
According to the Facebook post of Lorenzo which went viral, Andrey chased him inside a fast food chain and immediately returned the money.
Lorenzo handed him a cash reward which Andrey heartily received. The young boy told him he would give the money to his mother.
Aside from the small amount of cash from Lorenzo, Andrey received another unexpected reward.
Immaculate Conception Institutions awarded Andrey a full scholarship worth P400,000. This includes his allowance, uniform, books, and lunch.
Andrey’s education until college is now paid for.
According to the school, they admired Andrey’s honesty and values. They said that he was a role model not only to his generation but also to older people.
“Mag aaral po ako nang mabuti,” Andrey said after receiving the guarantee of his free education. (I will study hard.)
Though he has lived in grinding poverty all his life and is just barely in his teens, Andrey Macabuhay can clearly distinguish the difference between right and wrong.
In these trying times, when it is easier to be cynical, Andrey’s story is worth retelling a thousand times. –Rappler.com