Florida business owner pays bills of 36 families before Christmas
A Florida business owner is helping out those in need this holiday season. Michael Esmond found out who was at risk of having their utilities disconnected in his community. Then, he paid 36 families bills before the holiday.
Esmond told CNN he spent $4,600 to give his neighbors, "a happier Christmas and to take a little bit of the stress out."
Not knowing how you are going to pay your bills is a spot Esmond had been in before.
"I actually lived that back in the 1980s. I experienced the same thing, having trouble paying my bills. My gas was shot off, and we had no heating for the whole winter."
Esmond is close with his community of 6,000 people and wanted to give back to them, he said.
"I got a great feedback on my Facebook page and business phone. People were texting me and calling me to thank me for what I had done."
The families, who were expecting a bill from the city, instead got a holiday card that read:
"It is our honor and privilege to inform you that your past due utility bill has been paid by Gulf Breeze Pools & Spas. You can rest easier this holiday season knowing you have one less bill to pay. On behalf of Gulf Breeze Pools & Spas we here at the City of Gulf Breeze would like to wish you and your family a happy holiday season."