Pure Philanthropy—it still exists

News reports are coming in detailing how in a number of areas across the country anonymous donors are coming into stores and paying off the layaway balances of total strangers.

Primarily at K-Mart stores, a number of individuals have arrived at the store inquiring about the availability of layaway accounts with up to a $250 remaining balance.  These individuals then offer to pay off or substantially pay down the balance—anonymously.  Usually, the donors inquire about accounts where the presence of small children seems to be a fair certainty.

When the account holders are notified that their balances are zero—or nearly so, the reaction is a mixture of astonishment and thankfulness.

Truly this is an example of the unbounded generosity of Americans.  With no tax incentive, professionally crafted solicitation or slick media campaign, these good citizens simply stepped up and did what they thought needed doing.

Perhaps you’ve already read some of these accounts.  If so, have you considered doing the same?  Admittedly, I didn’t think of this all on my own, but now that others have set the example I will making my own trip to pay off someone’s balance, and give a Merry Christmas to a family who’s not expecting it.

Merry Christmas to you and yours.

Larry C. Johnson
M. E. Grace & Associates