NAMPA — Smiles by Disguise is a Nampa volunteer organization that went viral on social media after a kind act to a local family.
Heather White and her toddler son Raiden were shopping at the Walmart on Franklin Road in Nampa, where he spotted a stuffed dog that he wanted. White unfortunately couldn't afford the extra expense of the toy.
Lissa and Dale Gere were shopping nearby and saw that the toddler wanted the toy.
“They had this little stuffed dog and the little boy wanted it and the mom said, 'well we have to buy food first,'" Lissa said.
The Nampa couple decided they wanted to buy the stuffed toy for Raiden.
“We scraped together the money for the dog and we ran up to the counter and paid for it," Lissa said. "And all we did was run up to them hand them the dog, the receipt and our card and said Merry Christmas and that little boy's face lit up!”
Heather was speechless.
“How generous, how kind, this doesn't happen to us, we've had really bad luck,” she said.
Lissa and Dale say they do this kind of thing often. They started a volunteer organization called Smiles by Disguise in honor of a son they lost almost 15 years ago. Robert Gere drowned in tragic accident when he was just six years old.
“You know every time I see a little child smile, I can see my son smile, and it just warms my heart.” Dale said.
“Smiles by Disguise is just our family giving to others, so throughout the year when it's not Christmas, Dale dresses up as Bumblebee, Optimus Prime, the Easter Bunny and of course Santa at Christmas," Lissa said. "We just go to bazaars, birthday parties, we'll go to family reunions."
The Geres don’t charge for this, but they do accept donations. They put any donations into an account and adopt families in need at Christmas.
Heather White decided to thank this giving couple in a Facebook post. It quickly went viral.
“It blew up way more than I ever expected,” Heather said.
Lisa and Dale couldn't believe the response to the post on Facebook. There were hundreds of likes and dozens of shares.
“People were like 'you are so awesome' and I was like it's not about us, it's about Robert, it's about the season, it's about that little boy,” Lissa said.
Heather says it was a beautiful gesture for her little boy during this holiday season.
“I just want to say thank you from the bottom of our hearts, it blew my mind and that was the kindest thing that has ever happened to us,” White said.
For more information on Smiles by Disguise, check out the Gere’s Facebook page.