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Local veteran receives check from Bank of America for $2,000

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Out of the blue, a local veteran got a check for $2,000. Too good to be true? Some dogged determination has paid off.2 / 2

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Out of the blue, a local veteran got a check for $2,000. Too good to be true? Some dogged determination has paid off.

"It did seem very suspicious."

His account closed for at least 4 years, Captain Nathan Fischer received this Bank of America check. He wasn't sure if it was real so he did what many would do - He googled the customer service number to see if it was legitimate.

Cpt. Nathan Fischer/U.S. Army: "From there it took me to a number of online discussion threads that were discussing the validity of these checks."

Like this one, with the veterans who commented, giving conflicting information, some saying they had cashed the checks with no problem, others calling it a scam.

Without an overwhelming answer one way or the other, or a nearby Bank of America Branch, Fischer called the bank's Fraud Prevention Hotline to validate the check.

Fischer: "After 30 minutes or so she actually came back and said she could not verify the check and that it was most likely fake, at that point most people would probably throw it in the trash I would imagine.

But Fischer, an NDSU faculty member and inactive reservist, wasn't convinced. He kept digging, reaching out to another verified Bank of America outlet, its Twitter account. There, a different answer, saying the original customer service number with the check was actually theirs. He called that number, more good news, an explanation.

Fischer: "Bank of America made an error in calculating the proper interest rate to charge service members while on active duty. They've seemed to have discovered that error and are now in the process of making amends for it."

Betty Riess/Bank of America Media Relations: "Yes, What Mr. Fischer received is a legitimate check from bank of America.”

Fischer, nearly $2,000 richer, now worried that others who are skeptical, may not be as persistent as he was in finding the truth behind the check.

Fischer: "Probably 50% or more of the veterans receiving these what seem to be bona-fide refund checks might be throwing them in the trash and losing out on this refund that they're due.”

Fischer plans on using the cash to take a trip to Minneapolis for an end of summer celebration.

Brian Abel
Brian joined WDAZ in October of 2014, after reporting and anchoring at WDAY in Fargo since October 2013. He currently co-anchors the 6 and 10pm WDAZ News weekdays, and co-anchors the Saturday 6 and 10pm WDAY/WDAZ simulcast news. He was born and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan and graduated from Western Michigan University with a degree in Journalism. Brian has traveled across the country as a spokesperson for the automotive industry. He has also lived in Los Angeles, working in entertainment before pursuing his career in broadcasting. It’s experiences like these that give him a unique perspective when reporting. Brian is a Michigan Wolverines fan with an avid interest in politics and golf.  He is thrilled to be sharing stories with the Greater Grand Forks community working at WDAZ and looks forward to hearing any of your comments, concerns and story ideas.