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How The Little Book of Missing Money came about:

A coworker told me about the www.missingmoney.com Web site. I looked up my married name, my ex husband and then searched under my maiden name. I was stunned to find two listings from my father who died incompetent and indigent in 2001. He never told anyone about the MetLife stock he had from demutualization.

As a nurse in the recovery room, I have a lot of time between patients and began searching for listings for friends and family. When I ran out of people to look up, I searched for the surgeons I  worked with finding money for about ¾ of them. Eventually I exhausted that option.

I expanded to local and then national businesses and charities. My friends encouraged me to charge for my services. But my payoff was the simple ability to help people.

And then I found a listing for another nurse coworker. Linda had lost her mother in 2008. Ten months later she lost her husband to esophageal cancer. Most recently, someone had broken into her son’s house and shot, but didn’t kill, her son’s dog. If someone could use a break, it was Linda.

When I brought the listing to her, she was nearly speechless. “I’ve been getting letters and calls from attorneys and companies saying that they found money for me but they wanted all this money to help me,” she explained. “One guy wanted $700, another wanted $2,100. I was determined to find it on my own but I didn’t know where to begin.” I promised to help in any way I could.

Linda took the information I gave her and found additional listings she could claim.

Several weeks later, Linda called me from the post office. “Mary, I have checks in front of me for $63.50, $100, $55.84, and $2339.80. I’ve been out of work for three weeks. I fell and broke my arm in three places. I don’t have insurance. I didn’t know how I was going to pay my rent,” she said, crying.

It came to a total of $2,559.14. The monies came from a refund, a credit balance, a savings account and a group policy benefit.

In the search process, Linda found that her mother had American Express stock from when she worked there. The stock value was $7,200. She is in the process of getting that money after learning to contact the transfer agent.

I realized that Linda was not unique. Other people needed help, too. Above all, I wanted to do everything I could so people could claim their money without paying a ransom to get it.

The Little Book of Missing Money, is the result of that goal.