Woman Buys Out Entire Payless Store, Worth Almost $21K, and Donates 1.5K Shoes to Students
An Arkansas woman went to a local Payless that was closing down and walked away with more than just a few pairs of shoes for her three children.
Carrie Jernigan, of Alma, was checking out at the store in May when her oldest daughter, who “has the biggest heart,” asked her if they could buy a pair of Avengers shoes for a fellow student whose shoes were too small for him, according to CBS affiliate KFSM.
“I was like, ‘Of course,’ ” Jernigan told the news outlet. “I just said, ‘How much for the rest of the shoes in the store?’ I was almost joking and I could see the clerk’s face and her wheels start to turn and she finished checking me out. She said, ‘Can I have your number?’ ”
The district manager then called Jernigan — who expected there to be around 200 to 300 shoes left — and told her that there were almost 1,500 shoes she could purchase because of a new shipment they received that day.
“I always tell my kids, if you ask them what they want to be when they grow up, they say be kind, and so I don’t care what they do in life as long as they are kind and good people,” Jernigan told KFSM. “And so it just reiterates to me that their hearts are in the right place, and if it’s in the right place they can do amazing things.”
According to Money, the 37-year-old lawyer and local school board’s president “took home nearly $21,000 worth of merchandise — the majority of which she saved from the store’s blowout sale.”
Jernigan “intends to donate roughly 1,100 pairs to kids and local schools and give the remaining shoes to adults in need,” Money reported.
Payless announced earlier this year that they will be shutting down all 2,100 of its stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
“Payless will begin liquidation sales at its U.S. and Puerto Rico stores on February 17, 2019, and is winding down its e-commerce operations,” a Payless spokesperson confirmed to CNN Business, adding that “this process does not affect the Company’s franchise operations or its Latin American stores, which remain open for business as usual.”
KFSM reported that Jernigan’s story has inspired others to donate, and the family is now throwing a back-to-school bash on Aug. 10 at 2 p.m. at the Alma Middle School Gym.
“They will be partnering with Kibler Baptist Church and will also be giving away school supplies,” KFSM reported.