‘Choked me up:’ Stranger helps boy who only had $20 buy his mom a winter coat for Christmas

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- An Indiana mother is on a mission to find a stranger who helped her 11-year-old son purchase a winter coat for her for Christmas.

The stranger didn’t know how much the coat was needed, and what the gesture has meant to the family.

Gabe Wattley, 11, only had $20, but wanted to do something nice for his mom while shopping at Target.

“He had actually bought me a winter coat. For a lot of reasons... it choked me up," said LaDonna Wattley, Gabe's mom.

LaDonna Wattley needed a winter coat badly.

"For the last two years, the coat I was wearing was all shredded up inside. The lining was shredded up inside. I didn’t even know he realized that. I didn’t say anything about it. You do what you have to do," said LaDonna Wattley.

"I wanted to show that I know that she loves me, appreciates me and takes care of me," said Gabe Wattley.

He couldn’t afford to pay full price. That's when the stranger stepped in. She gave the cashier $60 to help pay for the coat. All of this was happening as LaDonna Wattley was still shopping.

"People who were in line were kind of smiling and nodding and I noticed some of the Target employees. He’s like 'cover your eyes Mom. Cover your eyes.' I didn’t know what was going on. I just did what I was told," said LaDonna Wattley.

On Christmas morning, when she opened her gift, she was moved to tears. She posted about the kind act on social media and the post was shared more than 70,000 times.

"What everybody has written has said you know Gabe renewed my spirit in people and that woman my renewed my spirit in the good in people," LaDonna Wattley said.

LaDonna Wattley said she's now on a mission to find out who the good Samaritan is, and simply thank her.

"Thank you, thank you, thank you so much," said Gabe Wattley.

Gabe Wattley said the stranger also offered to buy gloves and a hat. He said he told her 'no thank you,' because, “I didn’t want her paying any more money 'cause that was basically her money."

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