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Alabama neighborhood starts Christmas early for a terminally sick girl in her final weeks

November 22, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Ally Cheek's health is declining due to a rare genetic condition, but the 7-year-old wanted to see twinkling holiday lights one more time. So neighbors from near and far helped Christmas come early.

(CNN)When neighbors found out that 7-year-old Ally Cheek's health was declining and she might not live through the holidays, they decided to start Christmas early in Vestavia Hills, Alabama.

Her neighborhood banded together in early November to light up their homes so Ally and her family could celebrate Christmas together one more time.

The girls' mother, Morgan Cheek, said the Christmas lights have been a source of literal light in a dark time.

Cheek said the flurry of early decorating came about after she told a neighbor that Ally was continuing to decline but wanted to see the Christmas lights one more time.

We have been able to wrap Ally up in like a billion blankets, and get (her brother) in the back and just ride around and listen to Christmas music while Ally gets to see the lights," said Cheek.

"Holidays are those times of the year often bring thoughts of families being together and joy and celebration, but when someone has lost a loved one, the feelings of loss can sometimes be emphasized when the holidays come around, even if the loss goes back a while," said NHPCO spokesman Jon Radulovic.

She added that the gift of the early Christmas lights for Ally has been incredibly joyful for both the givers and the receivers.

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