Toddler Accidentally Shreds Up $1,000 Of His Parents' Savings

toddler money shred

Kids really do say and do the darndest things, but for one toddler in particular, he may have taken that notion entirely too far.

Picture it: A couple borrows a large chunk of change from their parents to purchase University of Utah football season tickets. After saving up a large portion of the repayment ($1,060 to be exact), they reached for the envelope one day to find the cash missing.

This is the very situation Ben and Jackee Belnap of Halladay, Utah found themselves in, frantically searching their home for the missing money until finally, Jackee found it...sort of. Holding up the shredder they use to trash junk mail and other documents was a pile of shredded up bills. As you can imagine, the shock was overwhelming.

Jackee told CNN's KSL affiliate that for a solid five minutes neither she nor Ben could speak. Then they considered who would do such a thing to their hard-earned savings. That's when the light bulb went off.

The Belnaps' two-year-old son Leo often assists his mom while she shreds junk mail and other assorted papers. When you're a toddler, there doesn't appear to be much of a difference between any old paper and paper money. The little boy clearly thought he was just doing a chore that he watches his parents complete all of the time.

Still, it isn't easy to see any amount of money chewed to shreds. Add to the fact that this was a heck of a lot of money and a sum that the couple owed to their family and it's enough to make any parent pull their hair out.

Believe it or not, the Belnaps learned that all is not completely lost in their situation. The US Department of Treasury has a Mutilated Currency Division (who knew?) and the family can send their shredded cash in for an exchange. The process will be slow moving, but eventually they should get their savings back. Ben was told to put the pieces in Ziploc bags and mail them to DC. It will take one to two years for the division to sort the cash, but once it's all pieced together, it can be returned.

Hopefully this will never happen to you (and it's a good reminder to keep small hands away from paper shredders), but should you ever find yourself in a similar situation, know that the Mutilated Currency Division has your back (whew!).

The good news is at the end of all this, Dr Pepper stepped up and reimbursed the parents. "Sounds like you need a real-life replay... We're the #OfficialDrinkofFans and want to help cover the costs of those tickets. DM us," Dr. Pepper tweeted to the family.


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