HOLLYWOOD (CBSMiami) — Kids at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood got a special visit on Christmas Eve from Santa Claus and his not-so-little helpers, better known as the boys in blue.
Officers with Miramar Police delivered toys and brought cheer to the young patients stuck in their hospital beds during the holiday.
It’s the eighth year the department has volunteered their time for the event, inspired by Amanda Arianna, the 20-month-old daughter of Miramar Police Detective Carlos Villalona, who lost her battle with cancer in 2009.
On Saturday, the officers, along with Santa and Mrs. Claus made stops around the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, the same unit where Amanda and her family spent the majority of her short life.
“The same thing was done for me, organizations came in and they brought us toys and it just brought joy to our lives at that moment, where we actually needed someone to care,” said Det. Villalona. “You can’t put a price on that feeling. You can’t put a price on knowing that people outside of the hospital, out in the community, care about you, too.”
There were lots of presents, lots of smiles and even some Christmas caroling.
“They do phenomenal work, and just to come and remember my daughter, and all the children here, is just remarkable,” said Laurie Kolo, whose daughter had hip surgery earlier. “There’s so many children and people out there with nothing, so we’re so grateful to be given the opportunity to have so many people that love us and support us.”