A little girl’s Christmas wish was answered on a global scale.

Eight-year-old Safyre Terry survived a house fire that killed her family. 

Once the holiday season came around, she was asked what she wanted for Christmas – and she said she wanted cards and “couldn’t wait” to fill up her Christmas tree stand with them.

And people around the world granted her wish several times over as she received over 700,000 cards.

The Harrowing House Fire

In 2013, Safyre survived a house fire in Schenectady, New York, that killed her three younger siblings and her father.

Seventy-five percent of her body was burned, and she lost her right arm and left foot.

A Child’s Christmas Wish

In 2015, Safyre’s aunt Liz Dolder, Safyre’s revealed that all the little warrior wanted was Christmas was cards from around the world.

According to ABC News, Dolder took to Facebook with the message–explaining the girl’s wish and that anyone who wanted to send a card should send it to the local post office.

Dolder recalled the moment when they got the first Christmas card, saying it was as if Safyre “won the lottery.”

To prevent her from getting her hopes up, Dolder told Saftre that only a few cards might trickle in.

But, Safyre’s wish was granted hundreds of thousands of times over.

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The Surprise of a Lifetime

Photo by WRGB-CBS/ABC News

Safyre got over 16,000 packages and more than 700,000 cards within less than three weeks, the U.S. Postal Service said.

Speaking with ABC News, USPS spokeswoman Maureen Marion said the post office was monitoring Safyre’s letter’s and packages after finding out about her story.

Marion also went on to attend a parade that the town put together to celebrate Safyre and the outpouring of goodwill represented in the letters and packages she received. The parade involved fire department and police personnel, and of course–mail trucks to make the deliveries.

The volume of letter’s and packages was overwhelming: Safyre received letters from all over the United States and across the world, including countries from Africa.

“It was an amazing thing to see because it really moved a whole community,” Marion told ABC News.

Honoring The Memory of Family and Life Today

In 2016, Safyre made a visit to  ABC News10 studio and was reunited with the Clifton Park and Halfmoon Emergency Corps. 

Members of the fire department also took her to see the LifeNet helicopter which saved her from the tragic fire.

One of the firefighters from South Carolina drove up to see her.

“She’s very spunky, which makes you smile and look at that and say, man, I’ll tell you, not that you don’t think what we’re doing is important, but when you come and meet somebody and see that, it just kind of brings closure to everything,” said LifeNet crew member Shawn Griffin in conversation with ABC News10.

In 2021, nearly a decade later after the tragic fire, 13-year-old Safyre officially became a teenager. 

She’s been doing things many kids her age do, such as taking online classes, building LEGOs, and roller skating.

In the same year, it was revealed that Safyre did a balloon release to honor her siblings and father, making her feel “happy inside.”

“I also wrote some messages on the balloon as well so it would get to heaven,” she said.

Giving Back

Safyre was overwhelmed by the support she received and told ABC News10 that when she gets older wants to become a doctor to help those who have been in similar situations as hers.

The heroism of the team that saved her and the goodwill of the people who sent her hundreds of thousands of letters–will continue to have an impact on her and the lives she touches for years to come.

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