Anonymous donor pays off Walmart layaway gifts for 200 families
EVERETT, Pa. (WJAC) -- An anonymous donor paid for all of the items on layaway at a Pennsylvania Walmart for the second year in a row, giving 200 families an easier Christmas, according to the store's staff.
The aisles are packed and lines are long at most stores this time of year as parents prepare for the holiday, but it can be tough to buy everything all at once with just one or two paychecks.
Kristen Martin said she knows that Christmastime struggle all too well.
"Bills were really high for December. I had like an $800 water bill, so it's just like, 'Well I'm gonna go and put stuff on layaway and hope for the best,'" she said.
Martin knew a "Secret Santa" had paid off everybody's layaway accounts last year in Everett. She figured that maybe this year, he'd do it again.
This week, he did.
Barbara Karns has worked at the Walmart for 20 years, and has never seen generosity and humility like this.
"In this area you don't hear a lot, I mean you hear small things where somebody pays somebody's grocery bill or things like that but this was pretty big," Karns said.
The Walmart staff has been making calls to families with the news, letting them know their Christmas gifts are paid off.
Kristen Martin said she asked directly if someone had paid for the gifts.
"I couldn't wait to get to Walmart. I was like driving and shaking. Look at me, I'm shaking. It's crazy," she said.
Martin's kids can now get their X-Box games and toys, but she said the parents get even more out of the donation.
"I think it means more to me, but I think they'll be happy. I remember when I was growing up for Christmas. I was just telling my mom the other day that I want my kids to have Christmas like that," she said tearfully.
Nobody knows who the secret donor is, not even the Walmart staff. They just call him "Santa B."
Whoever it is, Martin said they've given families a Christmas they may not have had.
"I think they have lots of treasures in heaven," Martin said.
Santa B donated a total of about $40,000.
Monday was the layaway pickup day, but the store manager said there is a grace period of a couple of days.