An Indiana teen displayed the true meaning of Christmas when she donated her entire paycheck to a family who could not afford to celebrate the holiday.
Abby Meehan, 16, was working as a cashier at Baesler’s Market in Terre Haute on Christmas Eve when a mother and her 10-year-old approached the check-out line to pay for some last-minute food items to celebrate the holiday, ABC News reported.
Meehan leaned down to talk to the boy and asked him what Santa was going to bring him for Christmas, said his mother, Cory Swetland. Immediately after, Swetland’s son, Jacob, began to tear up and explained that the family had the conversation the day before explaining that Santa was “not coming this year.”
When Meehan apologized, Swetland told her that it was OK, but explained that it pained her to see her son upset.
“She put our couple of things in a bag and grabbed my arm and said, ‘I can’t let that happen. What’s your number?” Swetland said.
Swetland assumed that Meehan simply wanted to enter the family into the store’s holiday raffle, so she gave the teen her number and went home. The single mother has been out of work due to a heart condition and was unable to afford presents for her four sons for Christmas.
Meehan said shortly after the encounter, she and her father went on a “mission” to get gifts for Swetland’s boys.
“It’s not fair for someone to not have something to open on Christmas,” she said.
Meehan spent an entire week’s paycheck to purchase a few games, as well as cookies and candy for Jacob. Meehan’s mother purchased additional gifts for Jacob’s brothers and $200 in groceries for Swetland.
Meehan and her father took the gifts to Swetland’s home, and Jacob was “jumping up and down and smiling.” The pair exchanged at least 10 hugs that night, Meehan said.
Swetland said Jacob now has a “friend for life” and that the family will never forget Meehan’s kindness.
“I couldn’t say enough wonderful things about her,” she said. “We’ve been calling her our Christmas angel.”