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Florida man pays the utility bills of 36 families for the holidays

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Posted at 3:11 PM, Dec 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-18 15:11:22-05

GULF BREEZE, Fla. (AP) - A Florida man who once spent a Christmas without electricity is paying it forward literally. He paid the power bills for 36 families with past due accounts.

Mike Esmond says he will never forget the Christmas in 1983 that he and his three daughter spent without heat and power because he couldn't pay his bill.

The 73-year-old small business owner went to the city of Gulf Breeze and requested a list of all past due utility accounts. Then he paid off all 36 of them, totaling about $4,600.

The city sent out cards notifying the residents of Esmond's act of kindness.