SWFL good Samaritan succeeds returning lost Christmas tree to family

Reporter: Breana Ross Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:

A good Samaritan made it his mission to return a Christmas tree that fell out of its owner’s car on the way home. And he has succeeded.

Friday, we reported Anthony Stango decided it was his job to return a family’s Christmas tree after he said it flew off a car unbeknownst to the driver.

Stango searched and accomplished his goal Saturday of returning the tree to the rightful owners.

“With the spirit of Christmas, this gentleman found the tree, returned it,” said Paul Savona, the tree owner.

Savona was crossing over Cape Coral Bridge to bring his family’s Christmas tree home when it fell off his truck without him noticing.

“When I pulled over, I noticed our Christmas tree was gone,” Savona said. “That felt kind of bad because you pick out your special tree for Christmas.”

Savona thought it was gone for good.

“I just thought, you know, somebody saw me lose the tree, and they picked it up and ran away with my tree,” Savona said. “I said Scrooge still lives too.”

But it was good Samaritan Stango who saw the tree fall, rushing to pick it up in hopes of returning it.

“Just needed to pick it up and get it back to who it belonged to,” Stango said.

Although Savona and his family have already bought a new tree, they still want the tree they thought they had lost for good to help put others in the Christmas spirit.

“The Christmas spirit lives,” Savona said. “He picked up the tree, and it’s going to make a lot of people’s day”

The Savona family donated the tree to LARC Inc. in Fort Myers, a local organization that helps people who live with disabilities.

“When they come in on Monday, they’re going to just freak out,” said Steve McBane, an LARC board member. “They’re going to be amazed, so now we have a beautiful tree to hang our ornaments on.”

Savona said he’ll let someone else take the liberty to fasten the tree to the vehicle transporting the Christmas tree to LARC, where the organization will hang its handmade ornaments and display the decorated tree at its annual campus Christmas celebration Dec. 11.

“I’m not going to take the responsibility of tying it down no more,” Savona said laughing.

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