LOVES PARK, Ill. (WIFR) -- Supplying gifts for kids can be a burden for some families but the Loves Park Fire Department is making sure everyone has the chance to open a present on Christmas morning.
"He was very excited as soon as he seen them pull up and seen the lights it's very exciting,” said Nicole Verkuilen whose son received gifts from the Loves Park Fire Department.
Nicole Verkuilen wanted to give her son Hayden the best Christmas ever but she says being a single mom can make it difficult.
"With the holidays you got the bills and you know, Christmas and trying to combine that all together,” said Verkuilen.
That's where the Loves Park Fire Department comes in. They got to play Santa and deliver gifts to nearly 100 kids in need.
"The fire department was awesome because he bring me Legos and all kinds of new stuff and it was exciting to see it,” said Verkuilen’s son Hayden.
"Probably the best group of firefighters a chief could work with. They give, give, give and you think well they've given so much and then they'll turn around and give some more,” said Chief of the Loves Park Fire Department Phil Foley.
The department has been loading up their trucks and delivering toys to little boys and girls each Christmas for more than 30 years.
"It's what Christmas is all about. Just seeing that little kid, just the happiness and just getting a gift and that's something you'll never forget,” said Lieutenant for the Loves Park Fire Department Jay Tucker.
Verkuilen says seeing her son's face light up when he had the chance to open up extra presents was priceless.
"And them taking their time out on their Christmas to help my son was very good. It was awesome,” said Verkuilen.
The department says being able to give back to their community makes them appreciate their work even more. For Verkuilen and Hayden this is one Christmas they'll never forget.
"It was a good morning; It was definitely a good Christmas, very good Christmas,” said Verkuilen.
The Loves Park Fire Department says many firefighters love volunteering to deliver the gifts to make many families' Christmas a little bit brighter. They look forward to continuing on the tradition for many years to come.