'Santa Tim' dies doing what he loved - | WBTV Charlotte

'Santa Tim' dies doing what he loved

(Photo courtesy Tracey Smith) (Photo courtesy Tracey Smith)
CHESTER, SC (WBTV) -

Tim Houston has worked Santa "gigs" in both North and South Carolina for a long time. You and your kids might have met him.

"He not only took on the character of Santa, he was Santa," said family member Tracey Smith. "Throughout the year he walked around saying, 'Ho-Ho-Ho', always wore red and sported his candy cane-striped walking cane. He loved listening to kids and the joy and wonder of it all. It's fitting he passed away doing what he loved."

Many of you have written me about Santa Tim, who lived in Chester. Out of respect, I refrained from saying anything until I heard directly from his family.

Tracey says this past Saturday Tim had finished one Santa job in Columbia, South Carolina and was stopping to eat lunch at his favorite restaurant before heading to another. At 60 years old, he suddenly went into cardiac arrest. His family had to take him off life support last night.

"It’s not every day you get to do what you love, but Tim did," Tracey said. "We are celebrating Tim and I wanted to write because sometimes you just want to share the good. Although what happened this weekend was sudden, he was a good man who had found his calling and his Christmas spirit will live on in our hearts."

Love the picture, Tracey. Thank you for letting us all know.

-Molly

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