ELYRIA, Ohio (WJW)-- Young visitors to the Lowe's Home Improvement Store in Elyria are invited to drop off their letters to Santa in a special holiday mailbox.
"We're Santa's little helpers. We collect the letters here and then we make sure that they get to the North Pole, so Santa can make their wishes come true," said assistant manager Jeffrey Crabeels.
One of the letters to Santa from an unknown child touched the hearts of the staff at Lowe’s. The letter read, "Dear Santa, for Christmas, I want food, string art, yarn, pins, foam and stuff to make string art. Merry Christmas!"
"The food part struck us. You know, you never want to see anybody not have food on their table, never want to see anybody go hungry,” Crabeels said. "Just thinking about things we asked for as a kid growing up, and food was never one of them."
The staff at Lowe's had just enjoyed a holiday party. One of the store's delivery drivers challenged his co-workers to answer the child's letter to Santa, by extending a helping hand to the needy of Elyria on the Eve of Christmas.
"I went home and came back the next day and said, 'Hey, let's do a luncheon, let's invite the whole community, because we don't know who this kid is.' Let's invite the whole community and see how this thing goes.’"
Other businesses in Elyria heard about the letter to Santa and decided to get involved, by making donations for the Christmas Eve feast.
"Truly, the Christmas spirit has come alive. The community has reached out, the phones here have been going crazy,” Crabeels said.
It turns out a child's simple wish for Christmas has inspired an entire community and reminded us all that the gift is in the giving.
"I just hope that any family that is alone or doesn't have the resources, that know we're here for them. Come, enjoy the food, enjoy the conversation and let's share that Christmas spirit,” Crabeels said.
The luncheon will be held tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Lowe’s at 646 Midway Blvd. in Elyria.