“Layaway Angel” story inspires others in Hampton Roads

Posted at 5:35 PM, Dec 24, 2013

The holidays are a time of giving and charity for many, and NewsChannel 3’s act of kindness is encouraging others to take action this Christmas.

The holiday season can be a mixed bag. It can bring out the best or the worst in people. Here in the newsroom, we tend to expect the latter, but every now and then, the best in humanity rises to the top.

On Monday, NewsChannel 3’s Jessica Larche walked into a Newport News K-Mart storeto find a family who could use a little help getting their Christmas toys off layaway.

The reaction when Jessica paid for Norman Beal’s gifts for his three children was beautiful and genuine, and so was the thank you note we received from his wife on Tuesday.

“Hello my name is Kimberly Beal, I am the wife of Mr. Norman Beal. I want to say, on behalf of my husband, my 3 Children, and I, we THANK-YOU from the bottoms of our hearts. This past year has been financially difficult on our family. And this unbelievable gift of paying off our layaway has brought tears to our eyes. No one has ever helped us in this way. And this will be a wonderful Christmas miracle for us, we will never forget this.

Merry Christmas, The Beal Family”

The reaction from Norman and his family apparently has also inspired others to go out and do the right thing when no one was looking.

Reporter Todd Corillo says a friend of his saw Jessica’s story and was inspired to take action as well.

He went to a Virginia Beach K-Mart and surprised a woman in line at the layaway counter. She was a 60-year-old grandmother raising her four grandchildren and wasn’t sure how she was going to pay the water bill next month on top of Christmas.

He reports she couldn’t stop crying.

All of this because he saw NewsChannel 3 take action and realized how easily he could do the same.

Jessica picked up another layaway tab while she was at the store on Monday and the store manager reports the woman who picked up her purchases on Tuesday was over-the-moon happy.

The Good News: NewsChannel 3 pays layaway bill for families in Newport News