Man cashes in pennies he's saved for 45 years

RUSTON, La. -- A Louisiana man recently cashed in hundreds of thousands of saved pennies, rolling them to the bank on a dolly after collecting them for more than four decades.

According to the Louisiana News Star, Otha Anders, 73, started collecting pennies 45 years ago when he spotted one on the ground. That first penny, he told the Star, reminded him that life is a gift from God.

"I became convinced that spotting a lost or dropped penny was an additional God-given incentive reminding me always to be thankful," Anders told the Star.

From that moment on, Anders picked up every penny he spotted. He also stopped spending pennies on purchases, preferring instead to put them in empty water jugs, the Star reports.

"I would never spend a penny," he told the Star. "I would break a dollar before giving up a penny."

After collecting the copper for decades, Anders deposited his haul on Tuesday to pay for some recent dental work. The half million pennies Anders collected amounted to $5,136.14 in cash.

The bank where Anders cashed in his change told the Star they were more than happy to help the longtime customer, though it took more than 5 hours for a machine to count through the change.

Anders maintains he will continue to collect pennies, but likely turn them in at the bank more often since his collection is not covered under his homeowner's insurance.