For the last 24 years, Today show production assistant Eric Hill has taken his Christmas card photo during NBC’s coverage of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, usually getting the anchors to pose with different props. It all began in 1990 with Katie Couric and Willard Scott.
But this year, Hill wasn’t able to be at the parade because he’s in his hometown of Pittsburgh being treated for stage four colon cancer. That didn’t stop Matt Lauer from making the photo happen. The team got a cardboard cutout and brought it to the parade. Then, as part of a week-long series called “Anchors Pay it Forward,” Lauer hand-delivered the photo to a surprised Eric Hill.