A True Christmas Story



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On 7 December 2013, Greg Parady, a 40-year-old financial planner and owner of Parady Financial Group in The Villages, Florida, went to a local Walmart to get some bicycles for Toys for Tots. He then decided to do an additional good deed, and he spent over $20,000 helping people pay off their layaways. Walmart operations assistant manager Deb Davis said, “I can’t believe [his credit cards] didn’t melt he was running them so fast.” He used the credit cards to pay half of every layaway balance above $200 — thus helping approximately 80 customers. Ms. Davis said, “We’ve had layaway Santas that will do a couple thousand here or a couple thousand there, but $20,000 was just an amazing amount.” Cindy Nazzaro, the 58-year-old managing partner at Parady Financial, said, “I came back here and I saw him standing here with his credit card and he was just swiping and swiping.” She added, “He had heard a lady out in one of the aisles talking about how she needed to pay off her layaway, but she didn’t think she was going to be able to take care of all of it this year. So he just walked back here and started in — it’s crazy.” Mr. Parady also swiped his credit card for people who walked up to the layaway counter intending to put items on layaway. Ms. Nazzaro said, “He would swipe his card and say, ‘Merry Christmas.’” Ms. Davis said that the reactions of customers were “tears, surprise. There was one lady after she cried she had to sit down because we thought she was going to faint. It was a true Christmas story.” Mr. Parady said, “Every time I looked over at her she would mouth the words, ‘Thank you.’” Ms. Davis said about the customers, “They didn’t know what was happening at first. This one girl in particular, she goes, ‘What do I owe?’ My associate goes, ‘That gentlemen right there just paid for you.’” Ms. Nazzaro said, “I’ve known him for years, and he just does things because he feels like doing them. It brought us all to tears … and made me realize we work in an awesome community. This is Greg’s way of giving back to the community, paying them back for how gracious they’ve been to us.” Mr. Parady got a lot of attention because of his good deed. He said, “I didn’t intend for the attention, but I hope it motivates other people. I hope everyone will use it as a tool to give in their own way. It doesn’t have to be money — it can be time, or just something kind.”

For Further Information: Lisa Bell, “‘Layaway Santa’ pays for $20,000 in gifts at Walmart in The Villages.” Click Orlando (Florida). 12 December 2013


For Further Information: “Greg Parady: Florida man pays down 76 layaway orders at Wal-Mart store.” WPTV (West Palm Beach, Florida). 13 December 2013


For Further Information: Ben Popken, “‘Layaway Santa’ rings up $21k for strangers.” NBC News. 13 December 2013


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