Photo of Boy Praying With Santa for Dad's Health Goes Viral - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Holiday Gift Guide 2017

From gift guides to local events, your one-stop shop for the holiday season

Photo of Boy Praying With Santa for Dad's Health Goes Viral

Boy asks Santa at Bass Pro Shops in Garland to help his father, who is ill



    Photo of Boy Praying With Santa for Dad's Health Goes Viral

    A photo of a boy and Santa, each with their heads bowed in prayer, went viral after another mom overheard the boy ask Santa to help his sick dad. (Published Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017)

    A photo of a North Texas boy and Santa, each with their heads bowed in prayer, went viral after another mom overheard the boy ask Santa to help his sick dad.

    The woman was in line with her own son to see Santa at the Bass Pro Shops in Garland on Tuesday evening when she overheard part of the boy's conversation with his family in line. In his hands was his wish list, and all he wanted was good health for his dad and help with the family's medical bills.

    The woman, who asked NBC 5 not to use her full name, said the moment touched her heart. She snapped the photo and later shared it on Facebook, asking anyone who saw it to help find the family again.

    The family saw the post and reached out.

    Two-Legged Blue Heeler Still Herds Cattle

    [DFW] Two-Legged Blue Heeler Still Herds Cattle

    Patton, a Blue Heeler, lost his front legs in a farming accident, but he's not letting it slow him down. With the help of a custom-made cart, he's still doing what he loves the most.

    (Published Thursday, May 17, 2018)

    "I have no real words. It's just been heartwarming that so many people out there believe and care," said Jason Coker, the boy's father.

    His son, Jacob, is 12 years old, and his family says he still enjoys seeing Santa every year.

    Emily Coker, Jacob's step-mother, said she was touched when Jacob told her he didn't want any toys or gadgets for Christmas.

    "He picks up on those things that you don't realize he picks up on until he brings you the glass of water or offers to help," Emily Coker said. "He's just special."

    The family says Jason Coker, an electrician, has been in and out of the hospital for two years. Doctors say he has a blood disorder, but they haven't pinpointed the cause. His most recent hospital stay was Dec. 10, so the health concerns were fresh on Jacob's mind when it was time to visit Santa.

    Santa was still seeing children at the Garland store when NBC 5 stopped by.

    Winnebago Goes Electric

    [DFW] Winnebago Goes Electric

    The Winnebago company is revamping its vehicles, and it's sparking up a new way to save to help save the plant. Available on commercial platforms, the new battery electric vehicle from Winnebago can deliver 85 to 120 miles on a full charge. It's ideal for things like bloodmobiles, law enforcement command units, and even media events.

    (Published Thursday, May 17, 2018)

    "All he asked for, all he wanted was for me to help his dad," Santa said. "He said he had a lot of pain."

    Santa told NBC 5 that he explained his expertise is in toys, but he offered to pray with Jacob.

    "I asked that the Lord would help him with the pain and that he would have enough joy in his heart to get through the pain," he said.

    Janet Contreras, a Bass Pro Shops employee, saw the exchange, too.

    "It broke my heart, especially when I turned and saw the mom in tears," Contreras said. "It definitely tugged at my emotions."

    "It brought it closer to home for me, because that's what Christmas is all about," said store manager Kathy Thompson. "Those special moments and innocent moments of a child, sharing a moment with Santa just kind of brings us back to what Christmas is all about."

    Amazing Video of Kilauea Lava Flows

    [DFW] Amazing Video of Kilauea Lava Flows (Raw Video)

    One week after the start of new Kilauea eruptions, scientists say there's no end for volcanic activity. Dozens of homes have been destroyed and thousands of people have evacuated the immediate area around the volcano.

    (Published Thursday, May 17, 2018)

    Since the post was shared more than 8,000 times as of Thursday, strangers have offered to help the Coker family with Christmas presents and money. The family started a GoFundMe page.

    Another Facebook user opened a bank account to accept donations, but the Coker family says they have not been contacted about the account. A local business has reached out to the family to help sponsor them for the holidays.

    "Thank you very much for your prayers, for your thoughts, for your help and for making this a Christmas our children will never forget and that we will never forget," Emily Coker said.

    MORE: If you would like to contribute to the Coker family's GoFundMe page, click here.

    Get the latest from NBC DFW anywhere, anytime

    • Download the App

      Available for IOS and Android