You Just Can't Stop The Gingerbread Man - Cincinnati Children's Blog

You Just Can’t Stop The Gingerbread Man

Ever since he was a kid, Jeff Geoppinger’s family has made a special delivery for the holidays: They drop off a gingerbread house to the nurses who took care of Jeff as a baby.

Jeff’s mom, Jewel, has held a special place in her heart for the nurses who helped Jeff recover from surgery in 1975. The family got to take Jeff home from the hospital that year on Christmas Eve.

Every year since, Jewel has picked out a gingerbread house for nurses at Cincinnati Children’s. She lets Jeff know when it’s ready for delivery.

Jeff, known to new nurses as “The Gingerbread Man,” is continuing the tradition with his son, 6-year-old Henry, who had heart surgery here when he was just four days old.

We recorded the family’s story two years ago for our “Tell Me a Story” audio slideshow project. Today, the Geoppingers are still spreading the holiday spirit.

“We are definitely still delivering the houses,” Jeff says. “Henry is doing well, and he continues to receive excellent care from his physicians and nurses at Cincinnati Children’s.”

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Tanya Leach

About the Author: Tanya Leach

Tanya Bricking Leach is a writer and video producer at Cincinnati Children's and a former newspaper reporter who has covered crime for The Cincinnati Enquirer, sports for USA Today, island life for The Honolulu Advertiser, food for The Associated Press and stories about storms and surfers for the New York Times. Tanya is the author of the military-themed travel guide "Hawaii for Heroes." She is married to a military veteran and is the mother of two young boys. When she's not wired in at work, she enjoys unplugging with her family on their sailboat.

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