Flashing lights connect Hasbro patients with surrounding community

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A Providence business is spreading cheer this holiday season – by sending special messages to patients at Hasbro Children’s Hospital.

At first, it started as a fun way to say goodnight – and now it lets the children know they’re not alone, and to sleep well.

Providence’s Hot Club started flashing its neon sign a week ago as a signal to the children in the hospital across the Providence River. It doesn’t cost any money and doesn’t even take much effort – it really is just the flick of a switch.

“This man came up with this simple, simple act of kindness and it’s just flying,” said Sarah Bates, the manager of Hot Club.

A half-mile away from the club, the signal is received and is sent right back.

Steve Brosnihan is a volunteer at Hasbro and he said he started the flashing light tradition years ago with a patient who was heading home. When Brosnihan left for the final time, he flashed a light toward the hospital.

“I didn’t expect this, but he flashed his room light in recognition and I thought ‘wow this is cool. I’m this far away and yet he’s still in touch with me and I’m in touch with him for one last goodbye,’” he told Eyewitness News on Wednesday.

Recently, Brosnihan asked the bar and grill on the East Side if they wouldn’t mind flashing their lights on Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m. for just a minute.

“I think that to have that one minute to know that somebody on the outside is thinking of them is huge,” Bates said.

“It raised their spirits – they feel more attended. They’re not as alone. Even though that light is way over there, it’s still meant for them,” Brosnihan added.

Brosnihan said he is looking for more businesses around the hospital to flash their lights at 8:30 p.m. – so the children throughout the hospital know someone outside the walls is saying goodnight.

Comments are closed.