The 2016ing won’t stop: Now Santa’s story about dying child is in doubt

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Enough, 2016. Enough. You took Prince, David Bowie and Leonard Cohen. John Glenn. You took Alan RickmanFlorence Henderson and Alan Thicke. A kid got into a gorilla’s habitat and the gorilla was killed. Then people turned Harambe’s death a meme fest until the zoo had to ask them to knock it off. 

Ryan Lochte happened.

2016 is almost over but the 2016ing won’t quit. A heartbreaking story of a kind Santa and a dying child has been called into question, and the newspaper that published it has now disavowed it.

Eric Schmitt-Matzen’s story of suiting up as Santa and comforting a terminally ill child in his finally moments went viral.

“Say, what’s this I hear you’re gonna miss Christmas? There’s no way you can miss Christmas! Why, you’re my Number One elf!” he told the Knoxville News-Sentinel.

But now, in a newly posted editor’s note, the newspaper said it tried verifying details of the story but could not.

“The News Sentinel cannot establish that Schmitt-Matzen’s account is inaccurate, but more importantly, ongoing reporting cannot establish that it is accurate,” the note reads. “Therefore, because the story does not meet the newspaper’s standards of verification, we are no longer standing by the veracity of Schmitt-Matzen’s account.”

So, thanks 2016. Thanks for everything.

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