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Kolak Christmas Light Show helps girl with half a heart

ELLIOTSBURG, Pa. --  Tucked away in Elliotsburg, Perry county, there's a special gift this time of year for folks driving on Sherman's Valley Road.

"A lot of effort goes into it," Kevin Kolak said.

He's talking about the huge light show he puts on in front of his house each year.

"Each star on the roof has anywhere from 240, close to 300 welds," Kolak said.

Kolak works all year long, planning, fixing, and creating new designs. Originally it was just for his wife.

"I put a lot of pressure on myself," Kolak said. "Because I want it to be top notch."

And though the road where Kevin's house sits is lit by his masterpiece, he's hoping the lights will brighten something else.

Just 20 miles down the road lives a very special 13-year-old girl, Lorelei McIntyre-Brewer.

"When people look at her they just assume that she's perfectly healthy," her mom, Chelle, said.

Lorelei has Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. Born with half a heart, she's had 31 surgeries so far. But upon meeting her, you wouldn't know it. Lorelei created the organization, Heart Hugs, making compression heart pillows for pediatric open heart patients.

"Making them happy makes me happy," Lorelei said. "A nice thing to do."

"I think Lorelei is a gift for everybody," Chelle said "I think she helps a lot of people in this world."

Several months ago, Lorelei's heart stopped completely. Her recovery was a miracle, though there is no cure for her condition.

"It's been a tough year, and it's been a tough life," Chelle said. "But this year, particularly, has been really really tough. When she actually made it to her birthday, we were shocked."

Back to the light show. The box that sits out front of the Kolak's house is a donation box.

"We feel that god put them out there and that's the one's were's going to take," Kolak said.

That money will go toward the McIntyre-Brewer family's medical bills. Which, at this point, is more than $100,000.

"We like serving other people. It's really hard to except help from the community," Chelle said.

A gift for the little girl with half a heart, who gives away a piece of hers each day.

"I think it's pretty amazing that Kevin and his family does this for the community," Chelle said. "Because when you talk to him, it's really really truly heart felt. There's nothing more to it than a labor of love and then wanting to be able to give back and that's really touching."

You can see the light show by visiting 1976 Sherman's Valley Road in Elliotsburg. You can also donate on their Facebook page.