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From Behind Bars, Christmas Spirit Rings Out

A powerful experience helps a local family "see the goodness in one another."

San Mateo County Jail   file photo
San Mateo County Jail file photo
Written by Diane Wakeham

When you think about the San Mateo County Jail, your first emotion probably isn't heartwarming thanks.

But that's just how a Patch user felt after walking through Redwood City recently with her kids. The family started to notice something different as they started down Marshall Street. Diane Wakeham posted on the Patch boards:

"We could definitely hear singing. Men's voices. We eventually heard enough to know that it was Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, and the kids got very excited. Then we went to see where the music was coming from, expecting a rehearsing choir just around the corner. But no, we eventually decided it was coming from the San Mateo County Jail."

The experience had a profound effect on her nine-year-old son:

"I could see the shock and contemplation in my nine-year-old's face as he processed for the first time that the men in jail were real people with real families who celebrate Christmas and have families they love. And that's where the Christmas spirit is, helping us see the goodness in one another. Thank you San Mateo County Jail for this wonderful Christmas moment."

Read her full post here.

Jim Clifford December 10, 2013 at 10:48 AM
I've had the same experience. The singing makes me think of the real meaning of Christmas. I usually shout "Thanks, guys." Hope they hear me. I wonder what the history is - when did it start and who keeps it going?

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