Arkansas Mom Bought 1,500 Pairs Of Shoes From Liquidating Payless Store, Gave Them To Needy School Kids

The exterior of a Payless store.
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Carrie Jernigan knows a great deal when she sees one.

The Arkansas mom was checking out the sales at a Payless ShoeSource near her home in Arkansas when her daughter asked if they could buy a pair of Avengers sneakers for a classmate who was in need of a pair of shoes. As Money reported, Jernigan instead ended up getting just a few more pairs — 1,500 more, to be exact. The national discount shoe chain had announced earlier this year that it was closing 2,100 of its stores and liquidating merchandise, leading to a number of blowout sales.

The 37-year-old Jernigan said that she jokingly asked the clerk how much it might cost to buy the store’s entire inventory, but found it was actually within her price range. So what started as a joke turned into an act of charity as Jernigan purchased 350 pairs with the intention to donate all of them to local kids in need.

“We made a deal to buy almost all [that] was left on the shelves,” she says.

But when Carrie showed up to pick up her shoes, she found that the store was receiving one more delivery just a few days before it would close forever. Her kids asked if they could buy those shoes as well, so Carrie decided to check to see if they would be appropriate for kids.

Carrie found she hit the jackpot — they were sneakers featuring Nickelodeon star JoJo Siwa.

“Of course, the first box I opened up was JoJo Siwa shoes,” she said. “Pink glitter was everywhere.”

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Carrie Jernigan is not the first person to take advantage of a Payless liquidation sale in order to help people in need. Back in April, a Kansas woman named Addy Tritt purchased 204 pairs of shoes at a liquidating store and sent them to help victims of the widespread flooding that had hit Nebraska around the same time. As the Lincoln Journal-Star reported, Tritt found a store where the prices had dropped down to $1 per pair. Tritt then used her negotiating skills to get the entire lot down to $100 and purchased them all.

The shoes helped the many people left homeless after flooding swept across Nebraska, hitting the state’s farms particularly hard.

In Arkansas, Carrie Jernigan said she will be donating close to 1,100 pairs of shoes to local schools to go to kids in need, and the other 400 will go to needy adults.