Family Starts New Christmas Eve Tradition

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(Memphis) It's the colorful bows and shiny wrapping paper that help make gifts look extra special under the tree. But folks aren't wrapping presents in Oak Court Mall to be pretty; they're taking donations for American Cancer Assistance.

"No hardly looking up, just continuing looking on, just wrapping as fast as we can do it," said Catherine Miller.

Five years ago to the day, she and her family were celebrating the holiday in the hospital.

"We started this non-profit after I had leukemia and a bone marrow transplant," said Miller.

The family was told the mother of two had a ten percent chance to live. She survived thanks to a donor. But after spending two years in and out of the hospital, Catherine and her family were then battling debt. 

This year the group raised thousands of dollars by wrapping presents. That money will go towards helping cancer patients pay medical bills, rent and even search for a donor. 

Catherine says it's her way of paying it forward, helping others, like a stranger once did for her. 

"To be able to continue this gift that he gave me, this in legacy of Torsten who was generous enough to save my life," said Miller.

Miller tells News Channel 3, shoppers had to wait on average an hour to get their presents wrapped.

If you would like to donate, go to