Michael Esmond, a business owner from Florida, has spent over $7,500 to pay off the utility bills of 114 households that were at risk of having their utilities disconnected.
But this is not the first time that Esmond has been a benefactor for others. Last year, he spent $4,558 in paying the utility bills of 36 families that were facing disconnection. However, he was able to help thrice as many families this year because the bills of many families were $100 or less.
“That really impacted me — that people can’t even afford to pay a $100 bill on their utilities and things are so bad,” Esmond said. “That’s why I was able to pay for 114 families.”
The 74-year-old Esmond, who owns Gulf Breeze Pools and Spas, says he pays off the utility bills for others because he has been in their shoes. In the 1980s, his family had fallen on hard times and they were not able to pay their bills, resulting in the electricity being disconnected in the freezing winter.
“I have been down on my luck like people are today, where I had trouble paying bills and raising three daughters,” he said. “The gas company shut the gas off and we didn’t have any heat.”
That was one of the coldest winters he had experienced. “We had ice and icicles hanging out the window inside the house,” he said.
And he does not want anyone else to experience similar adversities and hardships.
“I can relate to people suffering and not being able to pay bills,” Esmond said. “That’s probably one of the biggest motivators for me, because I’ve been there.”
And there is a reason that Esmond chose this time for his generous deed: he wants people to have a good festive season.
“People can’t afford to pay their bills and put food on the table, so I hope doing my part and paying some bills for these folks takes a little bit of stress off of them around Christmas time,” he said.
Isn’t this such a heartwarming gesture by Esmond that fills you with happiness? Have you heard of any other such philanthropic deeds? Let us know in the comments section below.
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