Thousands of toys delivered to Eau Claire pediatric patients

Published: Mar. 23, 2017 at 4:07 PM CDT
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Several children received special gifts Thursday, thanks to a Chippewa Valley teen's charity.

Katahrine's Wish delivered roughly 2,000 to 3,000 toys to pediatric patients in Eau Claire.

The charity started when Katharine Rhoten was 9-years-old and she was rushed to the hospital before being diagnosed with type-one diabetes. She says she remembers hospital staff giving her toys to ease her pain.

Rhoten has been paying it forward by donating toys, games and other fun things to area health care facilities. Rhoten says the generosity of people in the area is overwhelming.

"We started out with donating a hundred or so toys, to now thousands of toys each year, and it just fills my heart with joy to know that others are getting on board with this cause to make other children smile,” said Rhoten.

Rhoten has donated more than 22,000 new toys, stuffed animals and books to dozens of hospitals and clinics throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota.