"Layaway Angel" shows Christmas spirit at Mesa Walmart store - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

"Layaway Angel" shows Christmas spirit at Mesa Walmart store

Posted: Updated: Dec 16, 2013 05:14 PM
MESA, Ariz. -

The deadline for Walmart's layaway plan had passed.  If you hadn't paid off the layaway, you lose your deposit.  The items that you'd been paying on go back in stock -- unless, by chance there is a Christmas angel.

It was emotional day at the Walmart on the U.S. 60 in Mesa Sunday -- a lot of tears from customers, Walmart associates, any one who witnessed what some are dubbing a Christmas layaway angel.

She appeared quietly at this store in the layaway department two days after the layaway payment deadline -- an older lady with $5,000 and a surprising request.

Assistant Manager Rita Barreras and others in the layaway department were brought to tears by the older woman's request.

"Wants to pay off $5,000 worth of layaways," said Barreras.

Barreras and other employees immediately got to work going through layaway paperwork alphabetically.  They called people with the news.

"I said but your layaway is paid off and there goes the tears.. they just start crying with joy and I'm glad I was a part of it," she said.

Barreras figures 30 layaway orders were paid off, most of them included bikes and toys.  Barreras asked the woman why pay off the layaway for strangers?

"When she was younger, she remembers her mom not being able to pay off their layaways for them for Christmas, so she always kept that in her mind.. so that's something she did every year."

The joy she spread not just to the families who got their orders paid off, but to everyone who heard the story of the woman now referred to as the layaway angel.

"We need more good stories like this, absolutely and thank you anonymous lady, I think that's wonderful," said Marcia Reily of Mesa.

Some of the layaway orders paid for totaled $300 dollars or more. There were bikes on the list and Play Stations.

She touched several families, but touched just a lot more people with her Christmas spirit and sense of giving, wanting to remain anonymous.

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