Kindness returns to Long Beach family who provided thousands of care packages to first responders

Nellie De La Cruz said her random acts of kindness are all part of the nonprofit she created called Cancer Fighters.

Amanda Palacios Image
Wednesday, December 20, 2023
Kindness returns to LB family who made care packages during Pandemic
A Long Beach family's acts of kindness during the pandemic have now come full circle. Dignity Health and LA Galaxy partnered together to return the kindness and surprised the family with dozens of gifts.

LONG BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- It was a heartfelt moment as a Long Beach family was surprised with dozens of gifts, just in time for the holidays.

Dignity Health and LA Galaxy presented the family with a series of gifts ranging from clothes, games, and a TV, a grand gesture to honor the family and teen who touched the hearts of many.

"During the pandemic, I did care packages for the ER and I had donated pizza to the staff who were working," said Nellie De La Cruz, founder of Cancer Fighters.

De La Cruz says her random acts of kindness are all part of the nonprofit she created called Cancer Fighters. At 10 years old, she started making bracelets for cancer patients. And with the support of her family, her dedication to helping others didn't stop there.

"She's always looking for the next opportunity like 'what's next?' Nellie got diagnosed with POTS, so she does weekly infusions. So, she decided to go ahead and take 84 stuffed animals and donate them to the kids in the fusion center," said Nellie Lopez, De La Cruz's mother.

De La Cruz and her family's good deeds certainly didn't go unnoticed. La Galaxy and Dignity Health members say they wanted to reciprocate the kindness and make the family feel special.

"Seeing the family and happy they got when they saw the gifts, a surreal feeling for sure," said LA Galaxy defender Mauricio Cuevas.

"Such a caring and just warm-hearted young lady to want to make those care packages for our team and just to give to others," said Carolyn Caldwell, President and CEO of Dignity Health St. Mary Medical Center.

De La Cruz said she's not stopping anytime soon and is grateful for the opportunity to make a difference in her community.

"It makes me feel really glad to be able to help and know that I'm doing something to make other people smile," De La Cruz said.

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