Spartanburg, SC (WSPA) - Christmas came early for a group of children in the Upstate.
Spartanburg Medical Center held their 20th Annual "Pediatric Rehabilitation Christmas Party"
Every child received a gift specific to their developmental need.
The party starts with a long line filled with deserving children waiting to see Santa.
Sharon Caston is with Spartanburg Hospital, where the event was held. Sharon says, "We have invited 468 of our pediatric patients, ages birth to 21, with special needs to come here and celebrate Christmas, in an environment that's suitable to their special needs."
Each child facing their own set of challenges from Autism to Down Syndrome to Cerebral Palsy.
Each gift is selected out to help a child develop in the area they need it the most.
Judy Bradshaw, the Bradshaw Foundation, along with the hospital's foundation, generously sponsor this Christmas party. It's an effort that's near and dear to her heart.
Judy says, "Just coming and seeing the children and knowing that they are getting so much help from all these wonderful therapists and its such a joy and the Lord has been so good to us."
20 years ago this Christmas party started with 50 kids; now it serves nearly 500.
All of the children are currently in therapy, except for 6-year-old Kellen Bryant. His brother, Camden, faced therapy while fighting a rare genetic disorder but passed away in October because of it.
So Kellen was able to accept a gift on his brother's behalf. Kellen, "I saw Santa, and I got this present. It's soggy doggy."
April is his mom and she says, " Kellen is here since Camden couldn't be here. We know Camden is in heaven now and he's having the best Christmas."
Through it all, Kevin and April are well aware of Spartanburg Regional's impact.
Kevin said, "We witnessed firsthand how much the therapist actually loves their patients."
Little eyes filled with joy and faces full of laughter; all enjoying the many gifts offered this holiday season.
If your child has special needs and needs a speech, physical or occupational therapist contact Spartanburg Medical Center.