Man collects pennies for 45 years, stumping bank tellers when he finally cashes in

Throughout our lives, many of us have engaged in the act of collecting various items. From stamps to baseball cards, these collections often hold sentimental value or are simply a hobby. However, one man took collecting to a whole new level by amassing a staggering amount of pennies over the course of 45 years.

Imagine if you were to collect every penny you came across for just one month. How many do you think you would have? Now, extend that timeframe to an entire year. The number grows significantly, doesn’t it? Now, brace yourself for the mind-boggling notion of collecting pennies for 45 years.

This dedicated individual embarked on a lifelong mission to gather as many pennies as possible. Day after day, he scoured the streets, searched through couch cushions, and diligently saved every penny that crossed his path. With each passing year, his collection grew larger and more impressive.

When the time finally came to cash in his collection, he made his way to the bank. The bank tellers were left astounded as they witnessed the sheer magnitude of his accomplishment. Counting and recounting, they marveled at the countless stacks of pennies before them.

This man’s dedication and commitment to his collection serve as a testament to the power of perseverance and passion. His story is a reminder that even the smallest actions, such as collecting pennies, can lead to remarkable achievements over time.

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Otha Anders is a teacher from the state of Louisiana.

When he began collecting coins in the late 1960s, it wasn’t to amass any type of wealth, he just liked doing it.

Even when the government began a program of paying $125 for every $100 of pennies turned in, he wasn’t interested.

He liked having the collection.

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Collecting pennies as an excuse to say a prayer.

Anders said that he began seeing pennies as a reminder to stop and say a prayer.

“If I would see a penny when I’m gassing up, on the ground, or in a store, it would be a reminder to stop right there and say a prayer,” Anders said to ABC News. “I never failed to do that. That’s why they had so much value to me.”

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At no point during all of his penny-collecting did Anders accept coins as a gift from anyone else.

“But I never allowed anyone, not even my wife nor children, to give me pennies without being compensated,” he continued. “I wanted the inner satisfaction that God and I acquired this collection.”

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A reason to be thankful.

Over time this practice of stopping what he was doing and saying a prayer every time he saw a penny became important to Anders.

He noticed that on days where he wasn’t thankful enough for what he had, a penny would show up in his sights to remind him.

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“I became convinced that spotting a lost or dropped penny was an additional God-given incentive reminding me to always be thankful. There have been days where I failed to pray and more often than not, a lost or dropped penny would show up to remind me.”

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Filling up giant water jugs with pennies.

Anders filled big water jugs with the coins he collected.

He said at one point his goal was to fill up 5 giant water jugs but once he had done that, he felt the urge to keep going.

He needed to go to the bank and turn them in or else he’d never do it.

At the time he finally went to the bank, he had filled 15 5-gallon jugs.

“I wanted to fill five five-gallon water jugs. That was the goal, but I couldn’t stop. … If I hadn’t turned them in yesterday, I was not going to stop.”

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In addition to the intrinsic value Anders found in collecting the pennies, they also added up to have significant financial value.

After finding out his homeowner’s insurance policy wouldn’t cover his collection, he called the Origin Bank in Ruston, Louisiana, where he had been a customer for years.

Anders let them know he would be coming in with a large number of pennies.

They were happy to help but it was quite the undertaking.

“We value his business, as we do all of our customers,” said the bank’s Vice President Jennie Cole. “But if we can help Anders with his endeavors, we are happy to do so.”

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The jars had to be opened with an ax and the whole process took over 5 hours.

By the end, it was determined that Anders’ coin collection was worth thousands.

Anders ended up collectiong 513,614 pennies, over the course of those 45 years which came to a little over $5,136.

Watch Otha Anders’ discuss his penny collection in the video below.

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