Hospice Patients Get Memorable Tour of Holiday Lights

Updated: 11/27/2012 10:30 PM KSTP.com By: Amanda Theisen

Driving around to see homes decked out in twinkly lights is a holiday tradition for many Minnesota families. There's a group making these tours extra special for people who may not have much longer to live.

This is the fourth year Hospice of the Twin Cities has put on the "Holiday Lights and Limos" program. Volunteers take hospice patients and their families to see dazzling light displays in a stretch limo.

Tuesday evening, a limousine picked up Craig Heieren, his wife, Mary and their five grandchildren for the special tour. They went to Brooklyn Park to see 61,000 shimmering lights on a house of a man known as "Santa Dan".

Heieren entered hospice care in October. He has cancer and diabetes, and underwent a kidney transplant several years ago. But now, his body is no longer responding to treatment. For Heieren, tonight meant the world to him simply because he got to spend it with his family.

Hospice of the Twin Cities is looking for volunteers to help take other hospice patients on holiday light tours throughout the season. Click here to visit the group's website.