NEW CITY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – It doesn’t take much to light up the face of a child at the holidays.
“I thought it was really cool.”
What little Teagan Doria doesn’t fully understand is that a dazzling display of twinkling trees and giant inflatable Christmas characters was inspired by her.
“There was a time we never thought we’d see any joy in her face, from what the doctors told us in the beginning,” her father, Mike Doria said.
Doria is an NYPD detective whose courage was tested in the most personal way when he and his wife, Colleen, learned their baby would be born with a life-threatening heart condition.
The organization Angel Flight coordinated with Jet Blue to provide free flights back and forth to California for the family for Teagan’s treatment. Enter the “North Pole Airport.” Gary Cirlin who loves everything airplanes, heard about Teagan’s story and turned his lavish home light show into a fundraiser for Angel Flight.
“It just seemed like an absolutely perfect combination of personal connection and a passion,” New City resident Gary Cirlin said.
Friday night, the Cirlin family finally got to meet the strong seven-year-old for the first time.
The display is truly a treasure in New City and the hope is that it inspires a giving spirit in everyone who drives by.
Another look at this incredible display in New City! And the owners of hearts of gold — collecting $ to help Angel Flight provide free flights for medical patients. Meet the little girl who inspired this magic at 11 on @CBSNewYork pic.twitter.com/UsqfoIySTn
— Jessica Layton (@JLaytonTV) December 14, 2019
“The display was always meant to bring joy and charity,” Gary Cirlin added.
It’s a gift they’re sharing with the Doria family as their daughter defies everything doctors predicted. She has a lot of check-ups and possibly more surgeries ahead, but there’s no doubt her future is bright.