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Pizza shop owner receives heartfelt apology from man who didn't pay for pizza 13 years ago

The customer bounced a check for a pizza. Years later, he was still 'ashamed' of his actions.

Pizza shop owner receives heartfelt apology from man who didn't pay for pizza 13 years ago
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | kampus

It's never too late to make things right. In 2002, a man struggling to make ends meet stole a pizza from a pizzeria. Riddled with guilt, he decided to make amends nearly 13 years later by sending a heartfelt apology letter to the pizzeria owner. Though the owner shared the letter on Reddit, it has since been deleted.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | suzyhazelwood
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Suzy Hazelwood

Dated January 28, 2015, the letter had no name or return address. The man addressed the owner as “Dear Sir” and explained why he stole the pizza, using a check he knew would bounce. “I was going through a very difficult time financially and was at the end of my rope,” the letter read. He revealed that at that time, he had “no money” and had “a hungry child at home.”

Representative Image Source: Pexels | roman odintsov
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Roman Odintsov

He clarified that he wasn't making excuses: “I am not making excuses for my behavior, just applying some context,” adding that he was “incredibly ashamed and embarrassed” at his past behavior. He also wrote that he had visited the pizza store several times after that day, and had always wanted to confess and ask for forgiveness, but he was unable to muster the quintessential courage for the act, so he would just "eat my pizza and leave."


Over these 13 years, the man worked hard and built a solid business. When he became self-sufficient, he couldn’t stop thinking about his mistake and believed it was his responsibility to remedy the situation. “I hope there are no hard feelings,” he wrote. In the end, the man said that he had enclosed a money order for $54.39. “I came to this amount by assuming the original order was $20 and then adding 8% interest compounded yearly for the last 13 years,” he explained the math behind the amount.

Image Source: Imgur
Image Source: Imgur

The pizzeria owner posted this letter with the caption “Received this today, I'm speechless.” On Imgur, the letter has been upvoted nearly 19000 times, with comments from 733 people. “The world needs more people like this,” commented @flareonthefalseprophet.

Image Source: Imgur | @bananaturnip
Image Source: Imgur | @bananaturnip

@specialcontainmentprocedures added, “Most of us would have forgotten so quickly. This is the sort of person who knows right and wrong.” Noting a line from the letter, @thestalebread said, “'I'm not making excuses for my behavior, just applying context.' Something more people need to understand.” Another person, @deepwaterjew, commented, “Not sure whether or not I'm more impressed by his honesty or his math skills.” Whereas, @ThatsWhatISaidISaidBootyTraps suggested to the pizzeria owner, “Put a note on the counter that says ‘I forgive you. You know who you are.’”

Image Source: Imgur | @iambeans
Image Source: Imgur | @iambeans

Many people recalled similar experiences from their lives. @grahamatty said, “This happened to me 30 years ago when I owned a bakery. An old woman was dying and wanted to make amends.” @southwer looked back on a situation when they did something similar, “I did something similar when I took a cab once and found at the end of the trip, I had forgotten my wallet. I got the driver's address and sent him the cash (plus extra) later that day and he sent me a thank you note” 

Image Source: Imgur | @tomoohka
Image Source: Imgur | @tomoohka

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