3800 in dumpster
Joe Ellis from Murfreesboro, Tenn., found and returned $3,800 he discovered in a dumpster. WKRN

A Tennessee can collector is being recognized for dumpster diving etiquette.

Joe Ellis found $3,800 in a dumpster behind a Speedy Mart in Murfreesboro, decided to return it, and got a hefty reward, WKRN reports.

"That really shocked me," Ellis told News Channel 5. "That is the first time I found that kind of thing in the garbage like the, money."

On Saturday, Ellis was looking for recyclable cans when he came across a small plastic bag with the sizeable amount of cash rolled in $100 bills.

"That's too much money for me to find and not turn it in," Ellis said.

He turned the money in to the store’s employees, who handed it over to the Murfreesboro police. The thousands were eventually recovered by its rightful owner who wanted to thank Ellis for his kind deed.

"I came on out and I met the gentleman, his first name is David; the owner of the money, he shook hands with me and he put something in my hand and it was $400," Ellis said.

And although Ellis’ story is heartwarming, he’s not the first man to strike garbage gold.

In November, a Brazilian immigrant in Marlborough, Mass., found $20,000 in a dumpster, WHDH reports.

He wants to find its rightful owner, and he’s been contacted by Oprah and the Ricki Lake Show, Wicked Local reports

"If someone shows up, it's their money, not mine," he said.