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This 5-Year-Old's Wish Came True Thanks to a Red Balloon, a Mermaid and a Christmas Miracle

Red Balloon, Joie FOX 5

Here's a nice, little story to warm that icy heart of yours on this, the Friday before Christmas. 

The kindergarteners at St. Rose of Lima School in Chula Vista, Calif., wrote letters to Santa Claus, then attached them to red and green balloons and let them go, to (hopefully) find their way to the North Pole.

(What does that say about the U.S. postal service, that this is the more trustworthy method?)

5-year-old Joie's didn't quite make it though. Her teacher, Mrs. Garay, told Fox 5 San Diego, "Joie's balloon was the only one that wasn't taking off at the time when we let go of our balloons, so we ripped off the corner of hers to make it lighter, and there it went off into the air." 

Fox 5 also has a video that shows you what a red balloon looks like, if you need a visual aid.

NEWS: Here is what everyone got from their Secret Santa this year

Once it lifted off, Joie's balloon managed to reroute through San Diego. And that's where Terry Hardin spotted it while he was leaving work earlier this week. This is what Joie's letter said:

Dear Santa, I would like to have a mermaid doll with a bow for christmas. Thank you. Love, Joie

Terry took the balloon home and used Facebook to track it back to Mrs. Garay's class at St. Rose. (In a situation like this, we would point out how terrifying technology can be, but this story has a happy ending. Keep reading.)

Mrs. Garay says that Santa visited the classroom and told all the kids they he got their balloons, but Joie won't have to wait for the elves to make her wish come true: Terry was so moved that he bought her the mermaid himself.

That's not really a miracle though. That's just a person being kind (thankfully we haven't lost so much faith in humanity that generosity to your fellow man is a miracle). The miracle-of-sorts is that Terry's mother died last year and she was also named Joie. 

(H/T Gawker)

PHOTOS: Still need to shop? Check out our last-minute gift guide!

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