Lending Santa A Helping Hand


Christmas may be over a month away, but the holiday spirit has arrived in one KELOLAND community. 

Just before 3:30 Friday morning, area firefighters were called to a home engulfed in flames. Now this is all that’s left.

“When we were on our way out there we heard the address and we figured it out it was Santa’s house,” Murdo Fire Chief, Patrick Barnes said.

You may remember KELOLAND News introducing you to Santa from the Empire Mall. While Santa is known for his generosity, after this loss, Murdo firefighters are coming together to return the favor.

“We knew pretty much all his household belongings and everything he owned were in the house, so we decided when we got there we needed to try to help him out a little bit, so we decided to start the GoFundMe page,” Barnes said.

It’s a small town of about 700 people, but this town comes with a big heart after a loss like this.

“This is the way this community has been.  Anybody that needs something, we’re more than willing to help anybody,” assistant fire chief, Andy Hatheway said. 

Santa has been making the trip to the Empire Mall for over 20 years; his sister says today’s tragedy won’t stop him from spreading holiday cheer.

“Loves it, loves kids, and he actually went to work, or to the mall and said he was going to put on his best face and try to be happy for all the kids because things could be worse,” Santa’s sister, Krysti Barnes said.

The GoFundMe page is called ‘Helping Out Santa.’ We’ve provided a link here.

The Murdo Fire Chief says the fire was electrical.

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