Fifteen years after stealing equipment from the Meadowbrook Golf Course, the unknown thief returned this week to leave $1,500.

The former thief placed $1,500 and an anonymous letter of explanation in an envelope and left it Sunday evening at the home of Meadowbrook professional manager Jim Healy."It's a real nice gesture," Healy said Tuesday. "Hopefully, it will be fed back into our golf fund."

Healy, who has worked at the county-owned golf course 33 years, does not remember the theft of tools and engines referred to in the letter. He said there were two or three break-ins about that time, and it also was possible the individual was a former employee.

"I have felt so guilty about what I did ever since I did it," the letter said. "I should have taken care of it a long time ago, but I just never did. Now I would like to repent.

"I have estimated the cost of what I stole at today's prices. I have tried to be fair and I feel that $1,500 would very easily buy back what I stole."

Healy said the envelope containing the letter and $100 and $50 bills was left inside his screen door by someone who rang the doorbell and disappeared.