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Stop What You’re Doing and Send This 9-Year-Old Cancer Patient a Card for His “Last Christmas”

Jacob Thompson is 9 years old and has Stage 4 High Risk Neuroblastoma. Next weekend, his family will transform his hospital room into a festive space to ensure that Jacob has a final chance to enjoy the holiday. And you can help out.

As reported by Good Housekeeping:

On the big day, his room will transform into a winter wonderland — snow, sparkling tree and all (even Santa). But Jacob has one request: cards from anyone “inspired to reach out” to help bring the Christmas cheer.

He has already started receiving cards. The first, from his friend, pictured a decked-out penguin (his favorite animal). According to Jacob’s mother, Michelle Thompson Simard, “live like a penguin,” is a motto of his. She tells, that in Jacob’s words, this means “be friendly, stand by each other, go the extra mile, jump into life and be cool.”

Jacob sounds more than cool, and he’s faced more in his young life than many of us can even begin to imagine. Jacob’s Neuroblastoma has spread to his head and hip, leaving him bedridden, and he was admitted to the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital in Maine on October 11 with a prognosis of having a month left to live. Jacob’s only request is to receive cards for his “Christmas” day—so let’s make sure Jacob gets those cards. Let’s make it snow cards.

“Jacob loves the holiday season,” Thompson Simard said, “and we want him to know that Christmas wishes come true and that there are good people who care all around the world.”

As Jacob’s story has gained coverage and traction on social media, it’s likely that he’ll receive a flurry of cards, but many times well-intentioned people will think simply sharing the story is enough. No: when I finish writing this I’m going to put down my computer and find a card to send to Jacob and I’m going to send it. I wish I had greeting cards covered in penguins.

If everyone who reads a story about Jacob or retweets or shares a message about him sends a card, this kid’s special Christmas is going to be at least half as cool as he is.

The Thompson family also has a GoFundMe page that’s been set up to help with the eventual cost of Jacob’s funeral expenses, and this is another way to help out, if you can. But Jacob is still with us now. And he’d like to have a Christmas card from you.

You know what to do.

(via Good Housekeeping, image: Courtesy of Michelle Thompson Simard)

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Kaila Hale-Stern (she/her) is a content director, editor, and writer who has been working in digital media for more than fifteen years. She started at TMS in 2016. She loves to write about TV—especially science fiction, fantasy, and mystery shows—and movies, with an emphasis on Marvel. Talk to her about fandom, queer representation, and Captain Kirk. Kaila has written for io9, Gizmodo, New York Magazine, The Awl, Wired, Cosmopolitan, and once published a Harlequin novel you'll never find.