• Community celebrates Christmas early for child battling cancer


    BUTTS COUNTY, Ga. - A Florida nonprofit group and a local police department came together Sunday to help make one little girl's dreams come true.

    The group  surprised a 5-year-old Butts County girl battling a terminal illness with an early holiday season.

    Dahlia Minton has been battling neuroblastoma, a common childhood cancer, since 2011. This week doctors sent her home to begin hospice care, saying more radiation wasn’t going to help her condition.

    “The cancer has come back in 50 percent of her bone marrow and there are several tumors inside her brain that are inoperable,” said her father, Jeff Minton.

    Her family and doctors don’t expect Dahlia to make it to the holidays, so the two organizations came together to bring the holidays to her.

    The Scarborough and Friends Foundation, a group that helps those with a debilitating or terminal illness, offered to come to Georgia and bring snow. Together with the help of the Covington Police Who Care they filled Dahlia’s yard with snow Sunday. The foundation used 7,000 pounds of ice to make the snow.

    “Dahlia has been a special little angel in all of our lives,” said Sam Scarborough, with the Scarborough and Friends Foundation. “As you can see she's touched a lot of people's lives. The Covington Police Department got behind us and we just want to give her a great Christmas.”

    While community members began decorating the outside of her Jackson home, other sang Christmas carols to Dahlia.

    The afternoon included a parade of princesses, a Christmas tree with lights, lots of presents and a visit from Santa.

    "We want to make sure we give her a white Christmas so we will give a white Christmas in November and it will be the most specialday sher's ever had," said Scarborough.

    Friends and family also brought presents and balloons to Dahlia. They say she is very weak and isn’t awake very often, but they hope the sight of snow and Santa helped perk her up.

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