Elderly woman giving up possessions to pay her taxes—but help came in a stranger’s envelope

January 2, 2018 12:26 pm Last Updated: January 2, 2018 12:32 pm

Nobody likes paying their taxes—but what’s a yearly inconvenience for most people can be panic-inducing for people short on income who may not be able to pay them at all.

Donna Russman, a 75-year-old from Penn Hills, Pennsylvania, recently found herself struggling financially. In October she discovered her $16 per month food stamp allowance was being reduced to $15. She no longer has a car and is unable to get a job.

As a result, she has been struggling to pay her property taxes this year. She still needed to pay $918.55 in property taxes or risk losing her home.

Russman lives alone with her rescue dog Buddy. With no one else to turn to, she wrote a letter to KDKA radio host Marty Griffin, explaining her situation and hoping he could recommend a resource.

“Maybe you know someone who helps senior citizens financially, in legit need,” she wrote, according to CBS Pittsburgh.

(CBS Pittsburgh/Screenshot)

She wasn’t looking for a handout—she was willing to part ways with some prized possessions as payment.

“I have a 37-inch TV, and some Elvis Presley albums I’d be willing to give someone who would be able to help me.”

(CBS Pittsburgh/Screenshot)

To try and help the woman out of her financial rut, Griffin read the heartbreaking letter on his show, hoping that one of his listeners might be able to offer assistance.

Soon, he received a message from one listener—who made an offer that was above and beyond what anyone imagined.

The message came from Rege Turocy, from the South Hills, who was a complete stranger… until he showed up at Russman’s doorstep.

(CBS Pittsburgh/Screenshot)

After meeting the woman for the first time, Turocy handed Russman an envelope.

“I was so touched by your letter that my wife and I wanted to do this for you,” he told her.

(CBS Pittsburgh/Screenshot)

Russman opened the envelope to find a card inside…

And broke down when she saw the card was filled with cash.

(CBS Pittsburgh/Screenshot)

“There’s $1,200 in cash in there,” Turocy explained. “I want you to pay your real estate taxes.”

“My wife and I decided we’ll take care of your taxes for the next two years.”

(CBS Pittsburgh/Screenshot)

The two embraced, while Russman had tears in her eyes, knowing that her financial struggles were finally relieved thanks to the compassion of a total stranger.

And despite Russman’s offer, Turocy didn’t accept her Elvis records as payment—although he did take one thing on his way out:

“Let me take that tax bill,” he told her.