This Christmas Eve people all over the world will log on to the official Santa Tracker to follow his progress through U.S. military radar. This all started in 1955, with a misprint in a Colorado Springs newspaper and a call to Col. Harry Shoup's secret hotline at the Continental Air Defense Command, now known as NORAD.

Shoup's children, Terri Van Keuren, 65, Rick Shoup, 59, and Pam Farrell, 70, recently visited StoryCorps to talk about how the tradition began.

The Santa Tracker tradition started with this Sears ad, which instructed children to call Santa on what turned out to be a secret military hotline. Kids today can call 1-877 HI-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) to talk to NORAD staff about Santa's exact location. 

Terri remembers her dad had two phones on his desk, including a red one. "Only a four-star general at the Pentagon and my dad had the number," she says.

"This was the '50s, this was the Cold War, and he would have been the first one to know if there was an attack on the United States," Rick says.

The red phone rang one day in December 1955, and Shoup answered it, Pam says. "And then there was a small voice that just asked, 'Is this Santa Claus?' "

His children remember Shoup as straight-laced and disciplined, and he was annoyed and upset by the call and thought it was a joke — but then, Terri says, the little voice started crying.

"And Dad realized that it wasn't a joke," her sister says. "So he talked to him, ho-ho-ho'd and asked if he had been a good boy and, 'May I talk to your mother?' And the mother got on and said, 'You haven't seen the paper yet? There's a phone number to call Santa. It's in the Sears ad.' Dad looked it up, and there it was, his red phone number. And they had children calling one after another, so he put a couple of airmen on the phones to act like Santa Claus."

"It got to be a big joke at the command center. You know, 'The old man's really flipped his lid this time. We're answering Santa calls,' " Terri says.

"The airmen had this big glass board with the United States on it and Canada, and when airplanes would come in they would track them," Pam says.

"And Christmas Eve of 1955, when Dad walked in, there was a drawing of a sleigh with eight reindeer coming over the North Pole," Rick says.

"Dad said, 'What is that?' They say, 'Colonel, we're sorry. We were just making a joke. Do you want us to take that down?' Dad looked at it for a while, and next thing you know, Dad had called the radio station and had said, 'This is the commander at the Combat Alert Center, and we have an unidentified flying object. Why, it looks like a sleigh.' Well, the radio stations would call him like every hour and say, 'Where's Santa now?' " Terri says.

all photos: Courtesy of NORAD

read more here: http://www.npr.org/2014/12/19/371647099/norads-santa-tracker-began-...

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started by a typo. and this officer made that first childs when he found out it was  no joke. than had two of his men take over the phone calls. great job Colonel Shoup.

I wonder if the liberals would say that NORAD tracking Santa Clause is considered  under the ( separation  of church and state) due to the fact that Santa represents Christmas, and Norad is a government agency.

if they do screw them for ruining all kids and adults fun of tracking Santa.

Great story!

How cool, I wondered how that got started. Merry Christmas!

Great job Colonel  Shoup!!!  The Santa Tracker has made a lot of children in this country happy for many, many years.  I remember my grandchildren tacking Santa with NORAD.  I hope Obama doesn't get word a child is enjoying or has enjoyed it, he would make sure it never happened again!!! 

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

My children love the Santa tracker! I am thankful for the typo as it has brought much joy to my family. Merry Christmas everyone and a God Bless!

its stories like this that makes up the greatness of America......over the past 6 years our country has been depressed into a gulag with a tyrannical ruler that bypasses the people and enacts his unilateral edicts.

THANK YOU for your service!

Very nice story in this time of unrest and corruption.

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ALERT ALERT

 Kavanaugh Accuser Donated   To Hillary Clinton  10 Times,  60+ Liberal Groups 

Reportedly attempted to conceal political activity by scrubbing social media accounts

Over the weekend, a name and face were added to the previously anonymous sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, which is now threatening to derail his nomination. Those looking to obstruct Kavanaugh’s confirmation certainly saved their best for last, as the prior attempts included pathetic stunts such as:

– Claiming to file perjury charges against Kavanaugh, which only Jeff Sessions would have the ability to file.

– Packing the hearings with hysterical protesters, resulting in hundreds of arrests.

– Threatening female Republicans with extortion.

– Cory Booker comparing himself to Spartacus, the escaped slave who led a revolt against the Romans.

The identity of the accuser was revealed as Christine Blasey Ford, who has agreed testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Ford reportedly made the allegations back in July in a letter to Senator Dianne Feinstein, and Feinstein waited until it was close to the vote to confirm Kavanaugh before making the accusations public.

There’s a record of Ford making the accusation in a 2012 therapy session, though Kavanaugh isn’t named in the session notes that Ford gave to the press. Ford alleges that in the early 1980s, Kavanaugh entered a room drunk, pinned her to a bed, and groped her over her clothing. Kavanaugh “categorically denied” the allegations.View image on Twitter

Fin Gomez @finnygo   NEW: Statement from Judge Brett Kavanaugh:

There is a slight discrepancy in the account Ford provided in her letter to Feinstein and in her therapist’s notes, but that could simply be due to an error on her therapists part.

There are however some other questions that need to be answered which call into question Ford’s motives.

As Grabien reported, they include:

1. Why Ford deleted her public social media accounts before revealing herself.

Ford deleted all of her public social media before she came forward, making it difficult to see the advocacy and partisanship she was engaged in the time leading up to her making her allegation public. Of course, Ford may simply value her privacy, but the act of deleting her public postings will inevitably make some wonder what she didn’t want seen.

2. That Ford may have an unrelated grudge against Kavanaugh, as his mother, once a circuit court judge, ruled against Ford’s parents.

In August 1996, Christine Blasey Ford’s parents, Paula and Ralph Blasey, were foreclosed upon. Kavanaugh’s mom, Martha, was then serving as a judge on the Montgomery Country Circuit Court, and she ruled against Christine Ford’s parents.

3. That Ford is a Democrat who donates to left-wing causes, attended the anti-Trump March for Science, and previously signed an open letter challenging Trump’s border policy.

Ford is a political activist who has made dozens of donations to left-wing causes. According to OpenSecrets, she has made more than 60 donations to liberal causes, with almost four dozen to the pro-abortion group, Emily’s List, alone. Ford also donated to the DNC, Hillary Clinton (more than 10 times), Bernie Sanders, and the progressive organizing group ActBlue.

Ford likewise attended the anti-Trump March for Science, where she wore a hat knitted like a human brain, but inspired by the feminist “pussy hats” worn at the Women’s Marches. Ford also added her name to an open letter from health professionals who argued the U.S. border policy resulting in temporary separation of some families was harmful to children’s development.

There’s no statute of limitations on sexual assault in Maryland, where she claims that the assault happened. Rather than go to the police, Ford went to Dianne Feinstein. If her accusations are true, she should immediately file a police report against Kavanaugh and take him to trial. If she doesn’t, perhaps that’s because she knows the consequences of filing a false police report.

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