By: staff

Every year 7/11 on the Big Island sponsors a “Letters to Santa program” where they try and fulfill children’s Christmas wishes.  We have all seen it before, your keiki write a Christmas letter to Santa in hopes to get all the toys and games on it.  But one letter, in particular, caught the attention of Camille Wong (Digital Media Coordinator) and Edna Ching (Marketing Coordinator) of 7/11.  It was from 6yr old Xamien who wishes weren't for a new XBox or Playstation 4, rather it was for Santa to help take his grandmother's cancer away.

Once 7/11 saw this, they knew they needed to take action.  Edna reached out to Lisa Rantz from the Hilo Medical Center Foundation and told her about Xaymien’s letter and that they wanted to donate $500 to Hawaii Pacific Oncology Center at Hilo Medical Center. Edna also mentioned that they wanted to purchase 2 twin beds for Xaymien and his grandmother and that Camille had spoken with Slumber World in Hilo and received a quote, but it was difficult for them to coordinate from Oahu. Lisa tells us “I told Edna that we (Hilo Medical Center Foundation) would be more than happy to assist with the beds and that we have board members with trucks who would be more than happy to pick up and deliver the beds to the family. In a subsequent phone call”.  That's all it took for Santa's Elves to get to work.

Edna then said they would increase the donation to $2,000 so that HMCF could purchase the beds. Lisa continues “I called Slumber World and spoke with Daryl Fujimoto, Sales Manager for the Hilo store and he said he would speak with the owner on Oahu to see if he would be willing to donate the beds and within 15 minutes he called me back and said that it was all set up and they would deliver the two beds and set them up for the family. I called Edna immediately and told her the good news and she thanked me and said that they would like to keep the donation amount the same to help the good work that we are doing at the Foundation and perhaps we can see if there were items the family needed and support them”.

7/11 bought snorkel gear, playdough hamburger maker set, sheets, and comforter for Xamien and sheet and fluffy blanket for Jacqueline Goldstein’s bed (grandma), as well as the donation to the Hawaii Pacific Oncology Center at Hilo Medical Center.  Slumber World donated (2) twin beds that were delivered, HMC Foundation donated new pillows, blanket, a stuffed dinosaur chair, santa hat bed for Xamien’s favorite dinosaur Eddie (Xamien asked for a bed for his favorite toy since he was getting a new bed J), crate full of reading books, math game, white board & markers, a special book “I Love You Forever” as a gift from me and my sons to Jacqueline and Xamien to celebrate their special bond, a lantern of hope that I put together for grandma with an angel and lights inside so that she would always remember that she is Xamien’s guardian angel and he is hers. And upon hearing Xaymien's story, Pacific Isle Lending Group, LLC made a last minute donation of $500 to the family for Christmas!

Jacqueline just completed 6 months of chemo and is now on a 1x monthly maintenance with no sign of cancer; let’s pray it stays that way.  Kudos to 7/11 Hawaii, Hawaii Medical Center Foundation, Pacific Isle Lending Group, LLC and all who made this Christmas Wish possible.