Harper’s Hill

A thirteen-year-old loves sledding, but with only one leg, it’s a dream she thinks she has lost “Where are we going, Dad?” Harper Claar asked. Just minutes earlier, her father, Aaron Claar, had hurried 13-year-old Harper, her little sister, and her step-mom into the car. It was the afternoon of Christmas Eve, and the sky

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The Boy Who Saved Santa

A case of mistaken identity Tommy, known by his family as Bear, hugged his stuffed football, looked around his living room, and smiled. He’d been in that hospital forever, getting the tumor in his brain fixed. Now he was home just in time for Christmas. His mommy was in the kitchen, making his Christmas Eve

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Pedal to the Metal

A Passion Becomes A Legacy From an early age, Andrew Hoaglan loved helping his dad. Tim Hoagland, and his brothers fix things, especially cars. “We were always tinkering,” says Matthew Hoaglan, Andrew’s older brother. By age 15, Andrew had his first vehicle—a 1970 VW bus. His dad traded a Go-Kart for the old VW and

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Mathis and Spiderman

A boy’s super hero action figure comes to life This was the biggest car four-year-old Mathis Shroyer had ever seen. Big enough to hold his mommy and daddy and his two big brothers and his grandparents and more! He sat in the very back with his mom and pushed all the interesting-looking buttons. His mom

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The Whistle

A whistle beckons the most precious gift of all Glancing inside the charming home in Prairie Village, Kansas, on Christmas Eve, you see a typical suburban family — a mom and two teenagers enjoying a chili lunch. The stockings are hung on the mantle, including one for their pug Eva. The tree is festooned with

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Wheels of Freedom

A paralyzed girl gets the keys The man shivers and leans heavily on his cane as he makes his way up the dark sidewalk. The suburban home is brightly lit and the driveway is packed with cars. Nearing the porch, he hears laughter and talking, and he pauses. As the Chief Elf of the Elves of

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Remembering Riley

Patti Elliot smiles, seeing the excitement on her son’s face. Normally, 18-year-old Riley Pfannenstiel, who is struggling with a malignant brain tumor, has to lay on the couch, conserving his energy. But tonight, December 24, he sits on the edge of the hearth, his eyes shining, his coat zipped. He has already double-checked to make sure

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Remembering Riley

‘The elves are here:’ Topeka teen battling cancer delivers gifts to children facing serious chronic illnesses Riley Pfannenstiel is ‘inspiring,’ recipient says Riley Pfannenstiel, 18, and his mother Patti Elliott load up gifts on Christmas Eve to deliver to three Topeka families with a child battling a serious illness. In December 2016, Pfannenstiel was diagnosed

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