Customers at a downtown Edmonton, Alberta, Tim Hortons were more than a little suspicious when staff members told them their coffee was free of charge thanks to a mysterious stranger.

But it was true: An anonymous man who entered the store Monday afternoon asked to pay in advance for the large coffees of the next 500 customers, no questions asked.

"We asked him his name and he didn't tell us," employee Pinky Lung told the CBC. "He said he didn't want to tell anyone."

The man didn't bat an eyelash when told his total came to nearly $900 (USD$875).

"The supervisor asked (him), ‘why?,'" said store manager Joanne Averion. "He didn’t say anything, he just did it for no reason."

The gesture held until 8:30 AM the following morning, but hopefully some of those 500 customers will carry on its spirit by paying it forward.

[photo via AP]