All Things Soldier: “The Time Is Always Right To Do Right”

By: Ali Elizabeth Turner

This is the season when our country celebrates the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, and one of his most famous quotes is, “The time is always right to do right.” He made this statement, or its near equivalent, twice; once was in his famous 1963 “Letter From A Birmingham Jail,” and the other was in 1965 at the school I attended, Oberlin College, where King spoke three times.

The incident I am about to describe was exactly what Dr. King was trying to teach — that doing right is always right. And in this case, it served to make a disabled vet weep for joy, garner a reward for two girls, generate media coverage, and warm hearts. It happened in Detroit, and a Marine by the name of Marc Walsh had been to the grocery story. Unbeknownst to Marc, his wallet fell out of his pocket, and it could have been a disaster—besides carrying cash, credit cards, and his military ID, Marc is currently between jobs, so every dollar counts. He thought it was just lost, and did not know what he was going to do.

The next day, two kids found Marc’s wallet and went straight to his house, showed up on security footage, and returned the wallet. Marc’s roommate called him to let him know it had been returned, and Marc had to pull over to the side of the road because he was crying for joy so hard that he couldn’t drive. The girls went on their way, and the roommate forgot to get their names.

Marc reached out to the FOX station in Detroit, told his story, and asked that they put it out there so he could find the kids and thank them. “When I went back to look at the video, I was just completely shocked to see two kids that age being the ones to return it,” he said. “Honestly, it’s just really truly heartwarming. Unfortunately, they didn’t get a reward; so that’s why I wanted to find them,” he said.

The search was fruitful, and two 14-year-old twin girls, Makhia and Makyla Vincent told the news outlet that Marc’s wallet and the military ID inside reminded them of their grandfather, who is also a veteran. “I read the veteran’s card and I was like, I would hate if that was my granddad and that happened to him; so I knew we had to return it,” Makyla said.

Finally, Marc and the girls met, and the hugs were heartfelt. He was so touched by the girls’ honesty and integrity that he decided to give them $200, something that at this point is a huge sacrifice on his part. The sisters told the news outlet that they plan to spend a little bit, but will save most of it. “I feel really happy and grateful that I could help somebody because I know other people could have kept the money,” Makyla said. For his part, Marc said, “I’m so incredibly grateful, so grateful and humbled,” he told them. “It renews my faith in humanity, it really does.” Doing right is always right, and I hope your heart, whether you are a vet or a civilian, is cheered and warmed a touch in the middle of a chilly January.
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner