MOBILE, AL (WKRG) — It’s the kind of story that makes Christmas the most magical time of the year.
News 5 has confirmed that hundreds of gifts on layaway at the Toys ‘R’ Us on Cottage Hill Road were paid off by an anonymous donor the week before Christmas.
According to the store manager, the man walked into the Toys ‘R’ Us with his daughter and inquired about paying off the money owed on all the delinquent layaway items in the store. When told the total amount was in the “thousands of dollars,” the man paid the tab in full.
More than 200 families were on the receiving end of this random act of holiday generosity. They were called in over the next several days and were “beyond elated” to hear that someone had paid off their purchases.
News 5 made three attempts to interview the donor, who is a “businessman in Theodore,” but he denied repeatedly, saying he didn’t want any press. We spoke to his close friend, Laura Zatezalo, who confirmed that the man did not want any credit whatsoever.
“I can’t even imagine the feeling as a parent to get that phone call and knowing you don’t have to worry. For some parents it was the choice between keeping the electric on and getting gifts. It’s all about these parents not having have to choose [between the two],” said Zatezalo.