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‘Angels’ startle Virginia shoppers by paying off layaways, in nationwide giving spree

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Posted at 12:34 PM, Dec 14, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-14 12:41:28-05

Some shoppers got an early Christmas surprise Tuesday morning when their layaway balances were paid off by “layaway angels.”

The organization Pay Away the Layaway has been helping out families across the nation, by paying off their layaways.

They were recently in Virginia and helped out 17 different customers at a Burlington Coat Factory in Falls Church. They paid off around $1,400 worth of merchandise.

Over the weekend, more than a dozen families found a pleasant surprise when they arrived to make payments on their layaways Saturday morning.

This time it was at the Burlington Coat Factory in East Hartford. When shoppers arrived, they were greeted with the details that their holiday gifts that were on layaway had been completely paid for.

The organization Pay Away the Layaway paid 17 accounts in all and brought some joy to these families.

Victoria Green, of Bristol, said that the extra money will make her holidays an even more joyous occasion. Green is helping her granddaughter with college expenses and the thought of paying room and board on top of their layaway account was daunting.

“I had to pay my portion of her room and board, and I was wondering how I was going to get my layaways out and the Lord just made a way and I thank God for it”, Green said.

Family after family was surprised, and they all thanked those who helped make their Christmas a little bit more special.

“It’s an indescribable feeling. I mean just to see the reactions from these people, just overwhelming. It’s so joyful, and I’m just happy to be a part of this,” said Erika Wanzer, a volunteer for Pay Away the Layaway.

Jannae Stone said her layaways were for her 8-year-old daughter. She said the unexpected gift will make her family’s Christmas even more special.

“This was actually a blessing. It’s really, really nice,” Stone said.

It was a morning filled with giving, gratitude and hugs. An act of kindness these families will never forget.

“Coming from a person who works all the time, takes care of their daughter and just gives to her, whatever she needs, it’s a huge help,” said Brittney Ward of West Hartford.

Pay Away the Layaway is a non-profit organization that helps pay down holiday gift layaways with the help of donations. You can find out more about their organization by visiting their website here.