Never Too Old For Christmas Surprises

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Cherokee Rauch is 86 and mostly housebound, dependent on neighbors to bring her mail and for other assistance.

But she's not too old or too ill to enjoy a wonderful Christmas surprise.

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Cherokee Rauch shows off one of the large Christmas gift bags she was given earlier this week.

Earlier this week, two women -- "I'll call them beautiful reindeer," Rauch said -- arrived at her door unexpectedly, with two huge gift sacks in hand, filled to the brim with household goods and gifts.

"There was everything," Rauch said. "From toilet paper to toothpaste, oranges, cookies, cakes, a sweater, new slippers, a lap robe -- all just in time for this cold weather."

A widow -- her husband was Donald Rauch, who managed Hamman Lumber Co. (now Foxworth Galbraith) and was in the highway patrol reserve -- Rauch worked at Payson Regional Medical Center and Payson Care Center in records for many years. She has four children, but this is the first year she has had such a wonderful Christmas surprise, she said.

She made her home in Scottsdale before coming to Payson in 1974.

Rauch does not know who was responsible for her presents -- the tag on the gift bag read "#98."

"I want to thank whoever was responsible for the gifts. They are all really appreciated," she said.

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