World’s Strangest

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Layaway Angels

needy people are getting a nice Christmas surprise this year: anonymous
"layaway angels" have been donating money to pay off layaway
accounts in stores from all around the country:

Wal-Mart spokeswoman Dianna Gee says layaway angels are visiting
its stores "from coast to coast." At a Haleyville, Ala., Walmart,
a man donated $11,000 to pay the accounts of 75 families.
The phenomenon apparently began three weeks ago when a woman paid off
three layaway charges at a Grand Rapids, Mich., Kmart. Media coverage
prompted a slew of copycat givers.

Generosity can be contagious, says Lisa Dietlin, a Chicago philanthropic
adviser. After years of austerity, people are "knocking the economy
in the eye and deciding not to be stingy this year," she says.

Last Friday, a man walked into a Hayward, Calif., Kmart with $10,000
cash to pay down layaway accounts. He used $9,800 on 63 accounts and
dropped the remaining $200 in a Salvation Army kettle as he left the

Assistant store manager Darlene Beverly called some of the recipients.
"Some scream, some holler — with joy, of course," she
says. "They cry big time."

Judy Keen of USA Today has the story: Link
| Photo: KSDK

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December 21st, 2011

Stranger to the World


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