SADDLE BROOK, N.J. -- A Saddle Brook couple whose new television was stolen from their home while it was still in the box got a Christmas Eve surprise when a Hackensack contractor who read their story in Daily Voice bought them an even bigger one.
"They've been through a lot, with their home broken into and all, so I had to upgrade them," the good Samaritan said Thursday afternoon, after he and Police Chief Robert Kugler delivered the 50-inch smart TV to the Kuhn Drive couple.
The contractor said he'd been reading Daily Voice stories posted by a friend on social media about a rash of recent burglaries in Elmwood Park, Fair Lawn, Garfield, Maywood and Saddle Brook.
He was struck by a story this morning about the 50-something couple, who returned to their home Wednesday night to find the TV, a laptop and jewelry stolen by someone who pried open a rear door ( SEE: Thief Steals Christmas From Saddle Brook Family ).
The television "was still in the box," Kugler said of the 32-inch set. "They were about to open it and use it for the holidays."
"I thought, 'That's just not right,'" the contractor told Daily Voice.
So he headed to P.C. Richard in Paramus and called Saddle Brook police.
"With all the pain and grief that all these burglars are causing people at Christmastime, such a genuine act of kindness is comforting and inspiring," Kugler said.
The contractor, meanwhile, insisted on anonymity.
"I don't want anyone to think that I'm trying to draw attention to myself or my business," he explained. "I don't have too many people to buy for this Christmas, so this is good for me, too.
"I'm certain that most people would do it themselves if they had the time. It's just this time of year everyone is so busy. I happened to have the time.
"The woman was ecstatic," he added. "To see that kind of reaction -- that made it all worth it."