Retired nurse still plays Santa for sick children, despite her own illness

Middletown, New York (CNN) — A retired nurse is spreading holiday cheer to sick patients despite her own treatment of cancer.

Retired, longtime Middletown nurse turned Santa, Kathy Horbath says, “everyday is Christmas for a cancer patient.”

Helping people in their time of need is all she knows.

Dressed up as Santa, the 61-year-old delivered gifts and cards Thursday to some of Orange Regional Medical Center’s sickest patients. Like she has done for the past two years.

Except this year she is a patient too.

Diagnosed with terminal cancer, Kathy calls her efforts, ‘Operation Santa.’

The sentiment, despite her obvious physical struggle, is appreciated by everyone on her ‘list.’

“As long as I breathe life,” said Kathy, “I’ll be your Santa. And I’m here to give that spirit to these patients.”

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