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$12,000 Blows Out Of Pickup Truck

March 20, 1986

LEABURG, Ore. (AP) _ Matthew Diltz is counting his luck - and his money - after $12,000 blew out of the back of his pickup truck and scattered along the McKenzie River highway.

″I think there’s some real honest people out there,″ he said Wednesday after retrieving all but about $400. ″I guess people found some of it in their front yard.″

While unloading his pickup at his Vida home Tuesday night, Diltz placed his wallet and a First Interstate Bank envelope containing about $12,000 cash in the back of the truck, which had the tailgate down.

When he got in the truck to drive to Leaburg, he forgot about the wallet, the envelope and the tailgate. He didn’t remember until he got to Leaburg, about six miles away.

He immediately retraced his route, then went home, hoping he had left the envelope there. He didn’t find it.

Diltz drove back toward Leaburg and encountered a state trooper.

″I said, ’Did you find something there? I lost a large sum of money,‴ Diltz said.

The trooper was evasive.

″He didn’t want to be giving me back bank robbery money,″ Diltz said.

An honest citizen who lives near the highway - who did not want to comment Wednesday - called state police after finding some of the money, apparently in his yard.

Diltz proved to authorities that the money was his honestly. He had cashed a cashier’s bank check on Tuesday from an insurance settlement.

Police verified his story Wednesday morning and gave him more than $11,000.

″We went back there today down where I lost it,″ Diltz said Wednesday night. ″We walked down the ditches of the road and found another $450 right there on the highway.″

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