Uber driver saves Christmas by returning $8,000 cash a 16-year-old left in his car
Esbon Kamau is a hero.
When you’re a rideshare driver, passengers leave a lot of things in your back seat. According to Uber, the most common items left in vehicles in 2023 were clothing, phones, backpacks and purses, wallets, headphones, jewelry, keys, books, laptops and watches.
The strangest things left in Ubers in 2023 were a Danny DeVito Christmas ornament, a toy poodle and a fog machine. The rideshare company also notes that the most forgetful cities in the United States are Jacksonville, Florida; San Antonio, Texas; Palm Springs, California; Houston, Texas and Salt Lake City, Utah.
As reported by WVTM13, Esbon Kamau, an Uber driver in Alabama and father of 5, may have seen the most eye-popping thing left in a car in 2023: $8,000 cash. How he handled it has to make him one of America's most honest Uber drivers.
'Do something good:' Uber driver returns $8,000 Christmas gift to Hoover teen.
It all started when Kamau took Alex Tisdale, 16, on a 15-minute ride to John Hawkins Parkway in Hoover, Alabama. The two had a nice discussion that Kamau remembered because of the way Tisldale talked about his father. “He told me how his dad is proud of him and how he’s also very proud of him. And he said something which makes me feel very good,” Kamau told WVTM13.
After Kamau dropped off Tisdale, he immediately had another ride and noticed a red, Christmas-themed bag in the backseat. “I realized there's something at the back of my seat. And I picked it up immediately. And when I checked, I saw this a lot of money, quite a lot, to be honest,” Kamau said.
At the same time, Tisdale was retracing his steps, trying to remember where he had left the bag of money that his father had given him to buy a motorcycle. “I was pacing around the parking lot just thinking, where? Where could I put it? Where would it be?" Tisdale said.
Both contacted Uber about the missing backpack, and the company connected them to organize a drop-off. Without hesitation, Kamau drove to Tisdale’s location to give him his bag full of money.
"I was relieved and so surprised he actually came back because that was a very, very nice thing of him to do. Actually, tipped him $10 for that,” Tisdale said.
Kamau wants his admirable display of honesty to be a lesson for Uber drivers everywhere. “When you do something good, OK, it comes back 10 times," he said.
Kamau’s good deed is another beautiful reminder that personal integrity and kindness are worth a lot more than money. It’s also a wonderful reminder that in a world where bad news gets all of the headlines, there are still a lot of everyday heroes out there doing the right thing.
This is a touching story, but don’t let this Uber driver’s honesty give you a sense of complacency next time you’re riding in an Uber. If you leave something in the backseat, the rideshare company will charge you a $20 fee to have it returned.