The holidays are still a few months away but that hasn’t stopped a small town in Kansas from celebrating early this year. The town of Lebo came together on September 10th to celebrate Christmas for a three year old boy with terminal cancer. Christian Risner was diagnosed with Rhabdoid kidney cancer, a disease that creates tumors in the kidneys and lungs. His doctors expect him to live for three months, because of this the town decided to give him one final Christmas with the whole town.

The entire town participated in the celebration by decorating their homes, sending out Christmas cards, and carolers roaming the streets. Santa even stopped by to be a part of the festivities. Neighbors saw how difficult it was for the entire Risner family to cope with the diagnosis of their child. They then decided to come together to give the family a happy memory in the middle of something so heartbreaking.

Everyone in the town put together a potluck culminating with a surprise visit from Santa to give out presents to the children of the community. Christian and his parents were lead through the town in a sleigh so that he could enjoy the view of the festively decorated houses and the many trees that were placed all over the town.

Not only did the town organize this event, but they also organized a silent auction with the proceeds going to the Risners to help pay for their medical costs. This town is living proof that holiday cheer isn’t only for December.

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Rocio Zavala

Rocio Zavala