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Man, 81, Cashes in 500 Lbs. of Pennies Worth ... Not a Lot

The grand total: $816
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 19, 2015 10:36 AM CST
Man, 81, Cashes in 500 Lbs. of Pennies Worth ... Not a Lot
Ira Keys has saved pennies for more than 60 years.   (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

(Newser) – Save every penny you encounter over more than 60 years, and you could end up with 500 pounds' worth. But that lifetime of saving may be worth more in bragging rights than in financial gain. A Texas man has deposited his 81,600-penny collection, wowing bankers and earning him a spot in the news—though the coins themselves were worth just $816. Ira Keys, 81, of Slaton says he started saving in 1952 on his father's advice, KCBD reports. "He says, 'Whatever you do, son, save your money,'" Keys says. "I didn't have a lot of money, so I saved pennies and I just kept saving them."

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For the staff that spent more than an hour counting the pennies, it was "not a typical day at the bank, at all," says a worker. Keys' dad, he says, wouldn't have been thrilled that he took the pennies to the bank. "He'd say, I told you to save ... not to cash them in," Keys says, as the Daily Mail reports. Keys says he plans to keep saving, "but I don't think I'll have this many when I cash them in again." (Of course, sometimes a single penny can be really, really valuable.)

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