Million Dollar Santa

When Mr. Mayer found out he would be facing the final stages of his cancer soon, he locked the door to his office and stood gazing out of the sixth story window. To the right he saw the brick of the building which left for a very unpleasant view. But as he looked to his left, he could see the children from the pediatric ward, gathered outside playing in the snow. He watched them as they playfully threw snowballs at one another and another small group of children began rolling a large ball of snow to build a snowman.

Even after having received the news that cancer may be defeating his battle, he couldn’t help but smile as he watched the kids outside enjoying the weather. He realized after watching the nurses and parents with the children outside, that he felt complete with his career. All of his many years of service to the hospital gave him a feeling of satisfaction, though he knew his job still wasn’t finished.

He sat in his chair and wondered if there was anything else he could do at the facility before he left to be home. Looking over his desk, he noticed the sun was shining brightly onto the accounts receivable sheets. He began to wonder what would happen with his own funds and although his lawyer held a will for his belongings, he didn’t feel right in his heart that the money he’d earned from the facility should go to anything but that, the hospital.

Letting out a long sigh, he went back to the window to see the kids, knowing they would cheer him up again. He laughed out loud as he watched a small boy strike a nurse with a large snowball unexpectedly. This was when he realized, that the children he was watching play and many more, would be spending their holiday there, instead of home with their families.

Suddenly he had an idea of what he should do with his personal funds. As the anxiety erupted within him from his brilliant idea, he felt a sudden burst of energy and grabbed his coat to leave for the nearest department store. “Why did I never do this before?” he said to himself as he glided out of his office and proceeded to his vehicle.

A few days later, Mr. Mayer stood in his suit outside of his car in the parking garage and picked up the large red bag from the backseat. He took a deep breath and whispered to himself “You can do this Larry, don’t break character”. Once he entered the hospital, the front desk staff greeted him with surprised expressions and giggles. He simply nodded with “Merry Christmas” as he strolled past them and proceeded to Pediatrics.

It was getting late and many children had fallen sound asleep, but he didn’t mind. As he entered the room of each child, he pulled a toy from his bag and laid it on their bed. Some who were awake, were quietly surprised by their mysterious visitor saying “Santa’s here!” as they took their gifts. Mr. Mayer smiled and held back the tears as he watched the children, one by one, open their gifts while the parents stayed close by, wiping tears from their cheeks and giggling along with their kids.

That wasn’t the only facility he visited that evening, he visited two others that night as well. He traveled to many others throughout the week, visiting two and sometimes three centers a night throughout his state, until his funds were almost completely depleted. By the end of the week, Mr. Mayer was a kind of joyful, exhausted. He had hidden his Santa Suit with his attorney for safe keeps and promises that it should never be found. As he packed his belongings from his office that next week, he began to hear stories about the mysterious Santa that magically lit up the Pediatric ward of the hospital.

He pretended to not know about this person, but was grateful how the spirit of the hospital had changed overall. He knew then, that he could go home with true joy in his heart. As he began to walk through the doors to the hospital for the last time, he turned around and smiled to the front desk staff and said in his Santa voice, “Merry Christmas everyone” and watched as they stopped for a moment smiling in wonder. “Merry Christmas” he heard them say, and smiled as he proceeded to his car.

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