December 25, 2013
After delivering toys around the world Santa Clause made a special trip to The University of Virginia Children's Hospital to deliver toys to the patients there.
Leaving the reindeer at home after an exhausting night, Santa arrived at the hospital via helicopter. With plenty of presents donated by the Student Nurses Association, Santa had gifts for all the girls and boys in the hospital and their siblings.
"We've been passing out gifts all day and we'll continue to do that until every kid has a gift here," said Santa.
Santa and his special helpers hoped to spread holiday cheer and lift the spirits of the patients and their families who are spending the holiday in the hospital. Many of the kids, like two-year-old Madeline Dooley, have spent days in the hospital.
Madeline was diagnosed with leukemia in September. Spending Christmas in the hospital, she and her parents did not expect old Saint Nick to stop by.
"It was kind of a surprise, but being Christmas day it was a very pleasant surprise," said Madeline's mother Tatum.
EMTs pitched in to pass out gifts with Santa. They said seeing the kids reactions made working on Christmas worthwhile.
"It means a lot to the kids having to spend Christmas in the hospital, knowing that Santa can still find them," said Karen Hayes.
After Santa's trip, all of the left over toys were donated to the Salvation Army.