Holiday decorations and candles

 

Written by Jacob Terranova

 

The holidays can get hectic. There’s bad weather to worry about, holiday parties and family gatherings to find time for — and of course, death doesn’t take a holiday.

 

So, while others might see the holidays as a time to relax, it can be a somewhat stressful time for funeral directors. Burnout is a real danger around this time of year.

 

That’s why we wanted to share some heartwarming stories to help spread the holiday spirit and put a little “happy” back in your holidays.

 

Salvation Army Wins the Lottery

A salvation army kettle in Middletown, Pennsylvania, received an unexpected surprise when it was time to count the collections. The Salvation Army found a $1,000 winning lottery ticket left by an anonymous donor. Lottery Executive Director Drew Svitko told a Tribune Media outlet that “The Christmas season often brings out the best in people. It’s heartwarming to hear stories such as this one, and I applaud this anonymous winner for turning their good fortune into an act of charity that will benefit the community.”

 

Operation Santa Claus

At John F. Kennedy International Airport, Santa stopped by to spend time with 4,000 children with special needs. A hangar was completely transformed into the North Pole as children lined up to visit with Santa.

 

The event is held every year, put on by Community Mayors, a nonprofit dedicated to children with special needs. Shelley Della Rocca, an organizer for Community Mayors, said in an interview for Today that “Some of these kids can hardly even smile, but to see their eyes all lit up like a Christmas tree, it just gives you goosebumps.” Check out this Today article to see photos and videos of the children as they meet Santa.

 

Family Christmas Photo

This Colorado family created a clever photo for this year’s family Christmas card. Brandon Sistrunk is currently deployed in Asia and won’t return officially until January, but his wife Ashley wanted to make sure he was in the family photo.

 

She had Brandon take a photo of himself holding a sign saying “Merry” while another picture was taken of her and their three kids holding a “Christmas” sign. Ashley photoshopped the images together to create a now-viral family Christmas photo.

 

Brandon told the reporter at Today that “We have always talked about what it would be like for our story to be told for other military families out there. That way they could see they are not alone.”

 

 

Santa Helps Surprise Families

When Dillon, a 12-year-old Cleveland boy, sat on Santa’s lap, he was not expecting the big surprise that followed.

 

Dillon’s mother was deployed over the past 11 months overseas and wanted to surprise her son when she found out she would be home for the holidays. She worked with the SouthPark Mall in Strongsville, Ohio, to arrange the surprise with Santa Claus. When Dillon turned around, he saw his mother and jumped up in pure surprise to hug her.

 

 

Grandfather Learns to Knit

At 86 years old, Ed Moseley picked up a new hobby — and for a good cause, too. When he heard that his nursing home would be participating in a knitting contest to make caps for premature babies, he decided it was time to learn how to knit.

 

With the help of his daughter, Moseley got a knitting kit and went to work. After getting the hang of it, he went on to knit 55 caps and inspired others to help the cause, leading to a donation of more than 300 caps for premature babies at the Northside Hospital in Atlanta. Linda Kelly, a clinical manager at the hospital’s nursery, told ABC News “It’s great to receive these wonderful gifts. To have a gift left at the bedside, or a nurse put the hat on the little baby’s head, makes it all seem less like a hospital. It’s important for families to see their baby as a baby and not as a patient.”

 

Do you have some heartwarming holiday stories to share? Let us know in the comments below! All of us from Frazer Consultants would like to wish you a happy holiday season.