X

Story of $22K Missing Flute Has (Mostly) Happy Ending

Boston musician Donald Rabin lost it in on Chicago train, but a homeless man found it
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 5, 2021 9:51 AM CST

(Newser) – As lost-and-found stories go, this one has more drama than usual. Last Friday, flutist Donald Rabin got off a train in Chicago and realized he had left behind his $22,000 gold and silver flute, reports the Chicago Tribune. The instrument had sentimental as well as practical value, as his grandmother left him the money to buy it. The 23-year-old reported it to the Chicago Transit Authority and to police, and he spent hours searching trains himself, all with no luck, per the Washington Post. "I pray a good soul has my flute," he wrote in a Facebook post about his plight. The search picked up national attention, but Rabin still had no leads by Tuesday, when he was sitting on a plane about to return to Boston. That was when a CNN reporter let him know that somebody had responded to his Facebook post. As it turns out, it was a homeless man named Lukas Mcentee.

story continues below

Mcentee informed Rabin that he had pawned the flute for $500 and would accompany Rabin to the pawn shop to get it back. Rabin was a little wary about this and reached out to police instead. And while that was unfolding, the pawn shop owner caught wind of the missing-flute story on the news and independently contacted police to return it. The happy ending: Police reunited Rabin with his flute, and he gave them a mini-concert. He also donated money to a fundraising page for Mcentee and his wife, and he encouraged others to do the same. "I really do empathize with the homeless couple," he tells the Post. The not-so-happy ending belongs to pawn shop owner Gabe Coconate. "I'm out $500 for doing the right thing," he tells the Chicago Sun-Times. (Read about the weird things that get left behind in Ubers.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
X