Santa came to the Valley to give joy to those spending this holiday alone.
The Central Mat-Su Fire Department teamed up with the Anchorage Police Department and other first responders to help senior citizens in the area to have a very merry Christmas.
Early Christmas morning, first responders packed up goodies to give back to the community they serve.
“We have 43 deliveries here,” Central Mat-Su Fire Capt. Adam Schou said. “That’s not including the outlying areas for the rest of the Mat-Su and other areas.”
They’re doing this all through the Santa Cops and Hero program.
“We go out and deliver Christmas cheer and presents to those people who don’t have anyone,” Schou said. “So we go out and give them the necessities some companionship and welfare checks.”
This year, nearly 100 elders from Willow to Sutton received gifts, compliments of the Santa Cop program.
Donna Anthony started the program 13 years ago when she worked for the Palmer Police Department. The goal was to provide for seniors in the Mat-Su who may otherwise be alone or unable to celebrate the Christmas holiday.
Anthony has shepherded the program into what it is today: a huge borough-wide effort to help local elders.
Later Christmas Day, a group from the fire department went to a home on Golden Circle where 71-year-old Carolyn Christianson eagerly awaited their visit, decked out in a Christmas cat, light-up holiday sweater. She was home alone with her two cats Magic and Houdini.
This is the third year the fire department has stopped by Christianson’s house for Christmas. She became ill with Crohn’s disease, so gifts like the cordless blender she received mean a lot to her.