Gold bar recently found in a Salvation Army Red Kettle turns out to be fake


Recently, it was reported that a gold bar was dropped in a Salvation Army bucket in Prospect. Salvation Army representatives estimated that the gold bar was worth $1,500.

Now, a week later, it turns out the bar was “Fool’s Gold.”

According to David Yarmuth, the director of community relations for Salvation Army, a visit to a local numismatist where gold and silver coins are exchanged for cash value confirmed that the gold bar in question was in fact a fraud.

“They immediately knew once we pulled it out that that was not a legitimate gold coin,” Yarmuth said. “it is what it is, we continue to move on.”

The Salvation Army in Louisville has received legitimate silver and gold coins the last four consecutive years. 

“I’d love to say this is the norm, but it isn’t really. It is a rare and wonderful thing to notice at the end of the night,” Yarmuth said. “We don’t know what the intent was. Someone may have thought this was in fact a gold coin and they were giving it to us as a very generous donation.”

Fake Gold Bar in Salvation Army Bucket

Fake Gold Bar in Salvation Army Bucket

“Fool’s Gold” bar that was in Salvation Army bucket

Salvation Army KY

“Certainly, this was a huge disappointment, not just for us but for the men, women and children that would’ve been helped by this donation. After all, this campaign is about the people we serve, thousands each year who depend on hot meals, safe shelter and a chance to regain their hope and dignity when they no longer have it,” Area Commander, Major Roy Williams said. 

“People who give are, need to be noted as being very generous. Our success here, whether it be this campaign, or the fact that we’ve been able to keep our doors open for 136 years is a testament to the generosity of this community and we want to celebrate that,” Yarmuth said. “We’re very thankful for what we have and I think that’s part of the Christmas spirit.”

According to the Salvation Army, their “Red Kettle” campaign still sits some $25,000 short of its goal.

“We’re all praying that in the next what will be less than 24 hours that we can close that gap significantly,” Yarmuth said. “Regardless of where we finish on this campaign, we are not anticipating turning anybody away from here. We will continue to meet the needs of those who come through our doors. We don’t anticipate getting rid of any programs or services as a result.”

Online donations can be made as well at

RELATED: Salvation Army of Southern Indiana looking for help to meet goal

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