The ultimate story of the power of Santa Claus and Christmas could be a giant hoax. The story of the 5-year-old boy dying in Santa's arms at a Tennessee hospital touched the hearts of people across the nation. Seeing Eric Schmitt-Matzen tell the story also broke your heart. But now there are reports that the entire thing may have never happened.

The small Tennessee newspaper that originally reported the story, The Knoxville News Sentinel, has now retracted the story. The paper tried to verify Schmitt-Matzen's story and were unable to do so. Schmitt-Matzen has refused to name the hospital, the family of the boy, or the name of the nurse who summoned him in the first place. He says he's trying to protect the identity of the boy's family. Schmitt-Matzen could also not recall the specific date the incident happened, saying only in was around one month ago.

Other news outlets have begun poking holes in the story. The Associated Press tried to confirm the story but also came up with nothing. CNN called every hospital in the area but found no one who could back up the story. The website Mediate has also scoured local obituaries but couldn't find any children that age who had recently passed. Even Schmitt-Matzen's wife was gone when the supposed story happened.

What does it all mean? It doesn't look good for Santa.


[via Gizmodo]