One niece inherited the entire estate when her aunt passed away.
But, when her aunt told her there was money hidden in the bedroom, she wondered “is she just rambling at her elderly age, or is she serious?”
So when she hired David Lefever of then Crossroads Auction in Big Spring to come into the aunt’s home and take everything away for auction, she was on edge, and watched the workers like a hawk. She didn’t say anything about the possibility that they might find cash money. She had already combed the bedroom before they arrived, but to no avail.
David’s employee, Cindy, Cindy’s son and David’s son began cleaning the aunt’s home, preparing to haul the items away to Crossroads Auction House. The aunt’s home was just too small for an estate sale to be held in it.
One of the boys lifted up the marble top on a wash stand in the bedroom.
“It was just solid full of money,” David said.
According to Cindy, twenty, fifty and other dollar bills were bundled with thousand dollar wrappers. The bundles were then placed in tissue paper and wrapped with foil.
Renell Moore February 2, 2018
Amount of money found was never determined
“It was like she (the niece) was looking for the money, and once she found it, it was a relief,” David said.
He added that if she had shared this with him at the beginning of the cleaning, he probably could have found the money for her right away.
“I told her we always find money, jewelry, personal stuff,” David said. “I told her if we find any of that stuff, we’ll give it back to you, we always do.”
Yet, it is often hard to trust a stranger, or even fellow family members when it comes to money.
Family Feuds Witnessed over years as auctioneer sells off estates
David has witnessed numerous family feuds during his many years as an auctioneer, and explained that bidding wars drive up the price on items.
One of these wars began over a daisy churn, and the family member who was determined to buy it, was not the most popular member of the family.
“We sold a daisy churn that was cracked; there was a chip in it, but the lid covered up the crack,” David said. “We sold it for $300.”
When the buyer was carrying the churn to his pickup, he dropped it and broke it.
David said the other family members almost began clapping and cheering. They didn’t actually clap, but everybody got happy, he said.
In the past, David and his wife, Rhonda, held auctions every other Saturday evening at then Crossroads Auction House, located on the north side of I-20, between Big Spring and Coahoma, Texas.
David said the difference with an auction, is that everything is sold, whereas there are usually leftovers at estate sales.
Road Trip leads Pennsylvanian to become a Texan
David came to Big Spring from Pennsylvania in 1978. He was 18 and on a road trip with friends.
“We wanted to go on a big trip when we got out of school. We left in March when there was snow on the ground, and we came out through Amarillo on I-40,” he said. “We got down in here, (the west Texas area). We started pealing our clothes off – we were loving it. We went to the Grand Canyon. We went all around sight seeing. We went out to the beach in California, and coming home our car broke down in Big Spring,” David said.
He said he has been here ever since.
“It’s like one old boy I was working for said, ‘Once you get a little bit of Texas in your blood, you’ll be back.”