SOUTH JORDAN, Utah — Doorbell cameras are used to capture the worst sides of people stealing packages off neighborhood porches, but the opposite is happening in a community in Utah.
Kyle Eberle is spreading smiles with his latest prank.
“I usually put the ornament down, dance or something, then I ring it, then I make my way back to the sidewalk trying not to slip on the ice. No one wants to see the abominable snowman in an ambulance,” said Eberle.
Doorbell ditching in Daybreak is pretty standard and a welcome prank for most neighbors.
“I had to modify it myself and replace the eyes because they were not very visible,” Eberle said.
He says he’s already visited almost 20 neighbors, including Rachel Williams.
“It’s just the culture of our neighborhood, and we have people that do stuff like that, and Kyle is just a special guy and my kids watched him through the front door and went out and brought him a gift afterward too, just to say thank you,” said Williams.
Kyle was so determined to pull off the prank that he installed a doorbell camera himself for the Williams and then came back to do his ding dong ditch prank, but there’s a deeper reason he’s doing this.
In September, Eberle originally got the idea to cheer up his dad, diagnosed with Stage 3 liver cancer.
“The plan was to go around and doorbell ditch my neighbors and send him the videos while he was going through treatment,” said Eberle.
His dad was a big practical joker, which inspired Kyle to order the costume and ornaments ahead of the holidays.
Unfortunately, Eberle's father passed away the day after Thanksgiving.
Kyle didn’t want to go through with the pranks until one night when he was feeling down, he put his costume on, and the doorbell ditched his neighbor, leaving the ornament behind.
“And by the time I got home, Bryson sent me a video of his daughter very upset that she had seen bumble through the window when I ran away, and she didn’t get to give bumble a hug,” said Kyle Eberle.
So he suited up and went back to deliver that hug.
“That’s kind of when I realized that it didn’t matter whether my dad never sees the videos,” added Eberle.
Williams says she lost her dad to cancer as well. She can relate to Kyle’s loss and says his good deed is just adding to the magic of Christmas.
“To know that there was the meaning behind it, it just makes the magic of Christmas that much more special,” said Williams.
The viral doorbell video reached new audiences after Rachel shared the video online in a Facebook group for Daybreak residents. Now this snowman has a list of neighbors wanting a visit.
“There’s just lots of negative in the world right now, and to have something positive and exciting, it just feels good,” Williams said.
Kyle says he’s planning on scaling up his ding dong ditch Christmas operation even more next year.
Eliana Sheriff at KSTU first reported this story.