PORTLAND, Ore. - The holidays just got a whole lot brighter for one local woman who thought she lost her coin purse for good.
We first talked on Saturday with Mariah Taylor, a Portland philanthropist who founded a health care clinic in 1980. Known for her longtime charitable giving, she was even presented an award by Oprah for her work.
Taylor lost her purse during Friday's tree lighting ceremony at Pioneer Courthouse Square.
The purse found its way back to Taylor thanks to the help of a MAX operator who turned it in on Saturday after discovering it during a red line shift.
But Taylor didn't know all that when she received a note from TriMet, indicating it had an item that may belong to her.
We went with Taylor to the TriMet office in Southeast Portland. She was unsure what to expect.
"I've learned to pray, and I've put things in God's hands and he knows how to work things out," she said.
So when a TriMet worker presented her with her beloved coin purse, Taylor was ecstatic. "Oh my goodness, yes, yes, yes!" she exclaimed.
Taylor's cards were still in the purse, but she was missing all of her money, except for a single penny.
We weren't surprised about her reaction.
"If they were able to use the money that was in here, then I say God bless them," she said.
Taylor said she will focus on the positive, not whoever stole her purse, but the operator who turned it in.
"I'm thankful to have it back and to whomever left me this penny," she said.