A good Samaritan has taken the season of giving to heart: An anonymous man walked into the Walmart in Mechanicsburg, Penn. and paid off the remaining balance for every customer who had items on layaway.
He paid a total of $79,000.
Steven Myers, the store manager, met the man, who has been dubbed Santa B., in person. “When I got to meet Santa yesterday, he had those rosy cheeks and he had the white beard, so I’m going to say Santa is real,” Myers told Fox11 News on Dec. 15, a day after his good deed.
The kind act helped an estimated 200 to 300 families in the area bring home gifts for the holidays. Penny Geedy was one of the Walmart customers who benefited from the stranger’s generosity. “It’s great to see this,” she told Fox11 News. “I was worried if I was going to get all my checks in time to pick up the presents.”
Customers like Tiawanna Brooks are also grateful for what Santa B. did and want to thank him for his generosity. “You definitely don’t know how many lives you have changed and [for] helping people … who would have canceled their layaways,” she told Fox43 News, “and you’re able to help out. So it is definitely appreciation. So God bless you.”
Myers, who won’t reveal Santa B.’s identity out of respect for the man’s wishes (he’s said to be a local businessman), says this isn’t the only time the secret Santa has done this. It appears he’s been on a giving spree: A man also going by Santa B. stopped by another Walmart on the same day — this one in nearby Harrisburg, Penn. — and paid for every item on layaway, totaling another $79K. Myers believes this is the same Santa B. who came to his Walmart.
“He just said he wants to give back to neighbors,” said Myers, “and it’s just a way of showing appreciation, taking care of the community.”
Santa B. isn’t the only anonymous do-gooder picking up the layaway tab at local Walmart stores. Another person shelled out $106K at two stores on Ohio, while a third donated $200K at two stores in Florida, the company confirms. All in all, more than $480K has been given anonymously to Walmart to pay off layaway tabs so far this holiday season.
"We’re proud to be a small part of these random acts of kindness,” a Walmart spokesperson said in a statement.
(Top photo: AP)