CHICAGO -- Cubs player Dexter Fowler surprised 43 families at a Kmart in Chicago on Wednesday by paying off their layaway tabs, helping them with the expensive cost of back-to-school supplies.
"It almost brings tears to my eyes," Dexter said after he surprised the families. "Like I said, it's awesome to do that and be in a position to do that."
The center fielder's Fowler's Howlers organization donated $5,000 to pay for the layaway bills at the Kmart store on West Addison Street.
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"I didn't have no idea," said Shinette Phipps, whose layaway was paid off. "I got the phone call yesterday and I came during my lunch break at work."
"My husband is a Cubs fans. So I called him. He was like, 'I should have gone with you.' But he was with the kids at home," said Vanessa Cosme, another lucky recipient.
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Fowler got the idea from his wife.
"I remember Dexter was telling me about his childhood: 'My mom had these things on layaway.' And I was like, 'What's layaway?'" said his wife Aliya Fowler. "I knew this was something that really hit home for him. So it was really fun that I could get him involved."
Fowler just wanted to make things easier for parents.
"It is a blessing," said Joana Pelayo. "I mean, not a lot of people win. Not a lot of people are nice enough to do things like this."
Click here for more information about the Pay Away the Layaway program.
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Cubs player Dexter Fowler pays off families' layaway tabs
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