CORAL SPRINGS, FLA. (WSVN) - Two Coral Springs families that had lost their homes after a fire broke out received a holiday surprise from police and first responders during a special stop.
Christmas came a few days early for the two households, thanks to the Coral Springs Police and Fire departments.
7News cameras captured several children in front of Christmas trees surrounded with wrapped presents on Tuesday.
Nelson, one of the victims, said he feels overwhelmed by the generous gesture.
“We come for gifts but not like this,” he said.
“[We were expecting to receive] two gifts or something,” said Rachel Marcelin.
Instead, she said, her loved ones got “bags of gifts.”
The emotional surprise comes after the families’ homes caught fire within minutes of each other, Saturday.
“We lost everything,” said Nelson.
When asked what went through his mind in the aftermath of the blaze, Nelson replied, “I don’t know. Keep going, working hard for my family and bring another home.”
“It was all just shocking, the whole process, the whole thing,” said Marcelin, “trying to get out, looking at the fire, hearing things popping inside the house.”
Both structures were destroyed just days before the holidays.
Once crews put out the flames, they quickly realized these families had lost everything, including their Christmas trees and the gifts underneath them.
With Christmas just days away, Coral Springs Fire Deputy Chief Mike Moser said they knew they couldn’t just walk away from both families.
“We can’t imagine Christmas morning and these kids not being able to open their presents, so our police and fire departments got together, and it just means the world to us that we were able to help,” he said.
And help they did, with bag after bag filled with gifts.
“Now they know Santa does exist, so whatever anybody tells them, they won’t believe it,” said Marcelin.
There were enough Christmas gifts for both trees and both families.
“This has helped a lot for me,” said Nelson.
“There’s so many toys that they won’t even fit in the car,” said Marcelin.
Santa was able to fit everything inside the vehicle. 7News cameras showed Old St. Nick and a police officer as they closed the packed trunk of the family’s SUV.
Some might call this a Christmas miracle. Others would say it’s just a community that cares.
“People still have hearts. Some people still have hearts,” said Marcelin.
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