MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A young girl’s wish came true this holiday season after Santa Clause paid a special visit and brought along a new best friend.
As a quadriplegic, Lisa Garcia has lost all control of her arms and legs. But it hasn’t stopped the precocious 5-year-old from scooting around in her motorized wheelchair, powered by flicking the controller with her chin.
This year, her only wish was for a puppy. At Renaissance Ballrooms in Miami on Saturday, old Saint Nick showed up, pulled a little yorkie from his toy bag, and introduced the puppy to Lisa.
“She is incredibly passionate in and around puppies,” said Monique Salas, who runs The Miami Power Team Foundation, a non-profit devoted to helping children who are sick or disabled.
Lisa knew she was in store for a surprise. The dog’s name came to her instantly.
“I’m gonna name her Lilly,” she said with a smile from ear to ear. “I’m gonna play with it and have so much fun!”
Santa also brought toys for 65 other children with disabilities and terminal illnesses. The foundation has been extending a helping hand to these kids since 1991 and volunteers don’t receive any compensation for their time and effort.
“It’s really about promoting positivity in their lives through education, through physical activities or the arts,” said Salas. “We have a face-painting going on today and to really, sort of, bring them out of their element. It’s about community and engagement and to bring a level of spirituality and happiness into their lives.”