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Stranger pays 85-year-old woman's delinquent tax bill of $8,800

Eula Henley has lived in Russell Woods neighborhood since late 1950s

DETROIT – Eula Henley, 85, said she's at a loss for words that a complete stranger would pay her delinquent tax bill of nearly $8,800.

"I don't know who it is, but I certainly appreciate you," Henley said.

When Henley first moved to the Russell Woods neighborhood on the west side of Detroit in 1959, she said her property taxes were $700 per year. Today, she said they are $1,600 per year.

[RELATED: Woman fights to pay property taxes]

She got behind in 2011 and was never able to catch up, despite being on a payment plan.

Thanks to a Local 4 viewer, who wishes to remain anonymous, Henley's debt is free and clear. But there are many others in Detroit who are in a similar situation where their homes have lost value.

"When you have a home like Ms. Henley's that will appraise for $8,000 or $9,000, and it's assessed at $37,000, the system is flawed," said Errol Jennings, who is the president of the Russell Woods Sullivan-area Neighborhood Association.

"It kind of makes you anxious," Henley said. "You have anxiety attacks and you might say sleepless nights, but I can sleep and maybe I can even dream now. You know, I couldn't do that before."


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