Spanish Fort, Ala.,
12:56 PM

Saving Christmas for Bridges

Agent’s team rallies to replace stolen gifts for 3-year-old boy

After being displaced by Hurricane Michael in 2018 and having a lousy holiday, 3-year-old Bridges and his mother, Christie, were due for a positive experience.

And this Christmas had all the signs of being a good one.

Christie had saved and bought Bridges new toys and clothes. She was excited to surprise him on Christmas morning. As part of the holiday spirit, she encouraged him to gather up toys he had outgrown to give to charity.

New and old, everything was locked in Christie’s car overnight to keep Bridges’ curiosity at bay.

Then the unimaginable happened.

Thieves broke into Christie’s car and took everything as part of a burglary spree in her neighborhood. Christie was distraught and heartbroken.

She had renter’s insurance and called State Farm Claims. The record of her call showed up in Agent Lad Drago’s office in Spanish Fort, Ala.

Agent Team Members Rebecca Grizzle and Cat Holladay saw the claim first that morning.

“It immediately pulled at our heart strings,” Cat says. “Because her deductible exceeded the value of the items stolen, we couldn’t help from an insurance standpoint, but we still wanted to do something.”

With Lad’s permission, Cat and Rebecca pooled their money and asked other agent team members if they wanted to donate. The pair went shopping over their lunch hour and that evening, wrapped the gifts at home that night and brought them back to the office the next morning.

The next day, Rebecca called and told her they had a few questions about the break-in and asked her to stop by the office.

“She came to the office that morning and brought Bridges with her,” Cat says. “We sat her down, and Lad told her all the gifts under the tree were for Bridges. She broke down crying right there in the chair. She kept saying over and over about how no one had ever done anything like that for her.”

“It made my holiday season that we could do this for her,” Rebecca says. “Her face was so full of gratitude.”

“I know I have a great team,” Lad says. “But it was a reminder of how much they care about customers and people in general.”

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