Michael Esmond knows what it’s like to be cold. Thirty-some years ago he was struggling to make ends meet, and fell behind on his utility bills. His utility company warned him once, twice, and three times. Then they shut off the gas to his northern Florida home in Gulf Breeze, in the dead of winter. You might think that’s not such a bad thing, Florida being all tropical and such, but Esmond remembers that winter as one of the coldest on record, with temperatures in the single digits. It took him months to get caught up again with his utility bills — months during which he had no heat in his house.
Fast forward to just a few weeks ago. Now Esmond is a successful long-time business owner. He never has to worry about too much month at the end of the money. But he remembers what it feels like, and so when he was paying his bills this month he thought maybe he could spread a little Holiday cheer around to other families that are facing the same difficulties today that he once faced. He gave a call to the local utility company and made a simple request: he wanted to pay the bills of everyone who was past due and about to have their gas turned off.
He paid a total of 46-hundred dollars so that 36 families could have a warm Christmas this year.
We just thought you’d like to know that there are still people like that out there in the big bad world . . .