But in the holiday spirit, the community banded together to deliver the Christmas lighting and more than enough Christmas spirit – right outside his window!
A Meteorologist was Battling Blood Cancer
The late-Chris Bradley reported on the weather in the area for over a decade. He was well-known, well-loved, and was the official newscaster for the annual city Christmas Tree lighting – an important event in his local community.
Sadly in 2018, Bradley was transferred to hospice for his leukemia, which he called ‘sneaky and relentless” due to its aggressive advanced stage. The move to hospice left him unable to see the Christmas tree lighting that he held dear to his heart every year.
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Understanding the nature of the situation, fans in the local community came up with a heartwarming plan to bring the festive event to Bradley’s window to help lift his and his family’s holiday spirits.
The Diagnosis of a “Relentless and Sneaky” Form of Leukemia
Bradley was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid leukemia in 2017 and underwent 21 months of combating the disease with things like chemotherapy, stem cell transplants, and clinical trials.
In November 2018, he took to Facebook to explain his battle with the “relentless and sneaky” disease.
The meteorologist said that the options to treat the disease were unsuccessful and had sadly run out. Still, he was surrounded at home by his family, who were “so loving and devoted” to caring for him.
“I’m at home now, surrounded by my family. Jason and the kids have been so loving and devoted to my care all this time. Truly, we have fought this disease together. Our love for each other is so strong, and saying goodbye has been excruciating for all of us,” he wrote in the Facebook post.
A Community Bringing Holiday Joy During Hard Times
While Bradley used to host the Christmas tree lighting, his current health made that impossible. And that’s when holiday magic took form. People from around the community banded together and brought the festivities to the respected Bradley. Hundreds of people, strangers and friends alike, stood on his front lawn, holding candles, and singing carols to Bradley and his family.
Bradley’s local news station, 10TV- WBNS, posted a video on Facebook of the people coming together to give Christmas cheer.
Within the nearly 12- minute long video, hundreds of people can be seen gathered around singing Christmas carols such as “Joy to the World!”
The camera continues to show the people singing before panning over to show Bradley from a window. Bradley appeared to be overcome with emotion as he held back tears at the kind gesture.
Bradley does smile and sings along to other songs the carollers sing outside his window. Once they stop singing, Bradley stands up and waves to the community, thanking them for thinking of him.
How People Coming Together to Support Someone in Need is a Beautiful Thing
The video went viral on Facebook, with many people pointing out how remarkable this was for people to do.
“What a beautiful show of support for you and your family. May you feel the love and support from all of us and take strength and comfort from it. Keeping all of you in my thoughts and prayers!” one wrote.
“We Love you and appreciate all you have done for the entire viewing area! Your bright smile and cheerful attitude have always been a bright spot in our day! Thank you, Chris Bradley!” another person added.
Sadly, Bradley lost his battle with leukemia in December 2018 at 53 years old.
He began his career on ABC 6/FOX 28 in the 1990s. And for the following decade, he became the area’s beloved meteorologist.
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In his Facebook post that addressed his health condition, he expressed his gratitude to the community for their “love and support” during a difficult time in his life. He also shared how much he loved being a part of and serving the community.
“Both in sickness and in health. I’ve loved being a part of this community,” Bradley wrote.
Bradley is survived by his husband, Jason, and two children, Spencer and Maria.