INSIDE EDITION tracked down a New York woman who was abandoned by her father as a child to tell her she is owed $86,000 from his savings account after his death.
Rainwater Blackfoot, who is part American Indian, could not believe it when we told her about the unclaimed money - which she had no idea existed.
“If someone tries to help me out, there is usually a catch to it,” she said.
But there was no catch. The astonishing discovery was part of INSIDE EDITION's "We Find, You Keep" campaign to help people find unclaimed funds in long-forgotten bank accounts or safety deposit boxes across the country.
There is $14 billion of unclaimed funds in New York State; New York City alone has $3 billion. So far in 2015, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli has returned $300,000,000.
On average, his office returns more than $1 million in unclaimed funds every day. INISDE EDITION worked closely with DiNapoli’s office to locate Rainwater.
Rainwater told INSIDE EDITION that her mother walked out on her when she was just a baby and her dad put her into foster care when she was a young girl.
“He was telling me that he was having a happier life without me,” she said.
She said that her life spiraled out of control.
“There were many years where there was no food in the house,” she recalled. “I didn’t have electricity for months.”
Her father passed away in 2008 and unbeknownst to her, he left a savings account worth $86,057.
She now lives in a public housing apartment in Brooklyn. INSIDE EDITION's Lisa Guerrero and New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli tracked her down to surprise her with the good news.
Rainwater was shocked when she opened the check.
“Oh my,” she said. “ Wow, that's a lot of money!”
She said that it was her 25th birthday the following day.
“So this is a pretty nice birthday present,” Guerrero said.
“It is,” Rainwater said. “I could never have imagined in a million years that all this money would be sitting for me!”
The neighborhood helped her celebrate while a gospel choir performed.
She added: “It doesn't matter where you come from or where you started, sometimes the ending is beautiful.”
The INSIDE EDITION "Hidden Treasure" limo will be traveling across the country all September to help viewers find out if they have unclaimed treasures.
Could you be next? Find out if you have hidden treasures here.
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