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Family of Veteran Gifted Massive Light Display in Touching Gesture

by Victoria Santiago
(Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

A North Carolina family of 10 has gotten a sparkling Christmas surprise. The Alvarez family is a staple in their community. So much so that they were nominated for a holiday gift of a Christmas light display. The decorations included four-thousand lights, 200 feet of garland, snowmen, presents, and more.

Christmas Decor is the company in charge of the light display. The president of the company, Brandon Stephens, completed the lights with seven other people. The company has been giving families Christmas displays since 2005. Over 200 families have gotten them.

The Alvarez family is special to their community, and they work hard to keep everything balanced. The mother, Geisha Alvarez, is currently working towards a degree whilst managing the lives of her and her husband’s eight kids. She also acts as a caregiver for her husband, Angel. Angel is a veteran that sustained a traumatic brain injury in Iraq. On top of that, he’s survived cancer twice.

Despite being so busy, the family finds time to give back to their community. The volunteer with Team Patriot and Operation Homefront, two veteran organizations. They say that it’s important for them to help others and give back. Their time spent in the community has obviously not gone unnoticed. When talking about the grand display of Christmas lights, Angel stated “It makes us happy. It makes us know that what we do for other people, help them out in a time of need, it counts for something.”

Christmas Light World Record Broken by NY Family

On the topic of giant Christmas light displays, a family in New York has broken the record. Again. The Gay family, of Union Vale, New York, have been putting up Christmas lights since the 90s. They started decorating for their daughter in 1996. Back then, their Christmas decor only contained 600 lights. Since then, it’s grown massively. Now, you might be thinking that they added a few more strands, but no.

This year, they broke their own world record, with a total of 686,526 lights in their Christmas display. That’s up from 601,736 lights in 2014, of course. That year, they broke the Guinness World Record for most Christmas lights on a private residence. The lights are powered by almost eight miles worth of extension cords. Despite these big numbers we see, the cost to power it all is relatively low. According to the family, on average it costs $350 annually to run the lights.

The Gays use this Christmas past time to raise money for the causes they care about. This year they’re raising money for the Union Vale Fire Department. Overall they’ve raised $496,623 for charities throughout the years. Seeing the lights is free of charge, of course. The money they raise is completely donation-based, from anyone who appreciates their Christmas dedication or even just wants to help.