On December 12, 1983, Mr. T, star of The A-Team shed his tough guy image and donned a Santa Claus costume to assist First Lady Nancy Reagan in unveiling the Christmas decorations at the White House.
In a 2008 interview with The Independent, Mr. T admitted his invitation to the White House was one of the biggest surprises of his life:
“Nancy Reagan was campaigning to get kids to say no to drugs, and they heard about me going round schools telling kids to stay away from drugs. It was a real honor for a black kid from the ghetto who grew up on welfare.”
To his further surprise, the first lady even sat on the A-team star’s lap and gave him a kiss on the forehead, perhaps a thank you for the Mr. T doll he presented her with as a gift.
Four years later, Mrs. Reagan got some help from another popular television celebrity at the 1987 White House Christmas Party. The friendly, cat loving extraterrestrial ALF.