'Tis the season for spreading joy and holiday elves are in full swing doing just that by paying off layaway accounts for unsuspecting customers around the country.
One woman in Bellingham, Massachusetts, spread joy by the bucketload last week when she walked into her local Toys R Us store and paid off every single layaway account on record. The generous donor — who has preferred to remain anonymous — apparently paid off the accounts for 150 customers. The woman, who has been nicknamed "The Layaway Angel," spent $20,000 to pay off the accounts, telling store employees that she will sleep better at night knowing that the layaways are paid. The local newspaper, the Milford Daily News, reported that the customers were in tears when they were told the good news.
This holiday angel is not the only elf making the rounds this year. In the same week, another woman walked into another Massachusetts store — this one in Auburn — and spent $19,600 to pay off the balances of all of the store's 125 layaways accounts.
In Charleston West Virginia, business owner Jed Smith spent nearly $1,000 of his own money paying off layaway accounts at his local Kmart store. Smith said he was on a mission to spread holiday cheer, standing in line with other customers as he revealed that he would be paying off their accounts.
Another holiday angel, Tom Gubitosi, walked into his local Walmart in Farmingdale, New York, last week and handed out $100 shopping sprees to about 200 children. Gubitosi told WABC-TV News that he was donating the money in honor of his late mother, who loved children.
And in Moraine, Ohio, a Secret Santa donated $15,000 to pay off the layaway accounts of local Walmart customers.
If there is one thing I love about this holiday season, it is its ability to bring out the very best in people. And how one person's act of kindness inspires others to do the same.
Related on MNN:
- 6 things you probably didn't know about 'It's A Wonderful Life'
- 10 holiday budgeting tips
- 20 selfless things to do this holiday season