Anonymous donors in the United States are paying off the layaway accounts of strangers, buying the toys and games set aside by impoverished parents for their children.
The phenomenon began at Kmart stores across the country, but Wal-Mart and other retailers who offer the plan say they have seen it happen as well.
Last week, a young father in dirty clothes and worn-out boots stood in line at the Kmart layaway counter, Edna Deppe, assistant manager at the store in Indianapolis,recalled.
With him were three small children. He asked to pay something on his bill because he knew he wouldn’t be able to afford it all before Christmas. Then a mysterious woman stepped up to the counter.
“She told him, ‘No, I’m paying for it,’” Deppe said. “He just stood there and looked at her and then looked at me and asked if it was a joke. I told him it wasn’t, and that she was going to pay for him. And he just busted out in tears.”
This is so moving. I remember my parents working diligently to pay off Christmas & back-to-school supply/wardrobe lay-aways & how disappointed in themselves they would be when they couldn’t afford to pay them off. What a gift to give to loving parents in need.