Davenport firefighters spread Christmas cheer to children in hospital

DAVENPORT, Iowa-- For more than 15 years Davenport crews have been keeping up with a special Christmas tradition.

Each year on Christmas Eve they bring presents to spread Christmas cheer to children spending time in the hospital.

"This is one of our most exciting and fun things to do this time of year," said Zach Solis, Davenport Fire Department.

This year Santa Claus pulled into Genesis Hospital on a red firetruck.

"Unfortunately this year there's a high number of people that are (in the hospital) but we're trying to spread that cheer to anybody that we can," said Solis.

With the help of Santa, a fire crew, Mrs. Claus and some elves they set off to give holiday cheer.

They gave out onsies to newborn babies and bought presents for boys and girls based on their age.

"We wrapped presents early this morning, everyone was all hands on deck down at central station," said Solis.

Being hospitalized is not how most kids imagine spending Christmas. For Robin and Peter Lank their daughter Maddy had surgery the night before Christmas Eve to remove her appendix.

They'll be spending Christmas at the hospital.

"It was nice to have some Christmas spirit for sure versus sitting here for hours on end. She was not feeling it these days so it was helpful," said RobinĀ  Lank.

Lank says it helps ease the stress for parents as well.

"I think it's a very generous thing to do for the fire department to recognize the children in the hospital and the families that are going through this point in time," said Lank.