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Kmart ‘Layaway Angels’ Come to Redwood City

These anonymous residents are paying the layaway bills for strangers.

There’s something about the holidays that brings out the best in people.

“Layaway angels” have been making stops to Kmart retail stores around the country, paying off people’s layaway balances, according to a Time magazine story. But they’re not decked out in white with glittery wings and halos. These angels walk in dressed in regular street gear to foot the layaway bill for perfect strangers.

It began with a woman in her 30s in Detroit, Michigan, and has now come to Redwood City. Assistant manager Amal Derias said approximately 15 to 20 angels have been coming to the Kmart store each day since last week.

“If you just see the faces of the people when they hear their layaways have been paid, oh my god they just start screaming!” Derias said. “They are just so happy.”

Read about layaway angels from Patches in , , South Carolina, New York, Iowa and Wisconsin.

Derias said that most angels pay off bills that are specifically for toys, but some are random as well. Other angels choose payments in which the last installment is due so the item can be received in time for Christmas.

Cashier Chelsea Davenport added that some people come in asking to pay a bill around $100. She said she heard that one angel arrived yesterday and paid $1,000 in layaway bills.

“I have a really cool job right now,” Davenport said. “I’ve worked here for three years and this has never happened.”

Though Derias said she wasn’t sure if the Secret Santas would continue giving after the holidays, she said she was grateful for what the angels were doing during the holidays.

“I just want to thank [the angels] because they have made people so happy,” Derias added. “It is so marvelous. God bless them.”

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