Facebook Twitter

Former student sends letter of apology, money for stolen books to school decades later

SHARE Former student sends letter of apology, money for stolen books to school decades later

RIVERTON — A former Riverton Elementary School student recently atoned for past mistakes after admitting to stealing paperback books from sixth-grade teachers decades ago.

Kyla Robertson, a Riverton Elementary administrative assistant, was going through the school's mail when she came across an anonymous letter with $50 enclosed in it.

The letter's contents revealed its sender's former misdoings with instructions to use the money to purchase new books for the school, Robertson said.

“I was in sixth grade during the 1969-1970 school year,” the letter began. “I took some paperback school books from my teachers. I think their names were Ms. Stout, Mr. Wade and Mr. Bellon. I know I can't pay them back, but take this and get some more books with it. Sorry for what I did.”

School employees were shocked, Robertson said, and thought it was cool the former student came forward after so many years.

Robertson confirmed that the money will be used to buy books, and she said she hopes the anonymous sender knows the school received it.

“No matter how old or what your situation in life is, you can always … if you have done something wrong, even if it takes you years … you can ask for forgiveness,” Robertson said.

A Riverton Elementary lunch lady, Ardell Wong, happened to be in the letter writer's sixth-grade class and said all her classmates were good kids.

After Wong found out about the letter, she sat and wondered who it could have been but thought, “Oh, you know, kids do dumb things.”

Back then, they had to go to Midvale to buy books, Wong said, so she thought the person really liked the book and thought he or she needed to have it.

“It made me think, ‘Wow, what in my life … do I need to do to reconcile something?’” Wong said. “It makes you think about your own life and things that you need to make right and stuff.”