"It is with great sadness that we confirm the sudden and inexplicable death of a beloved father, husband, and friend. The shooting happened during a routine practice run for what shapes up as a particularly snowy Christmas Eve. He will be missed.
"Rudolph loved children, birds, and deer feed, and was never happier than when flying through the air with the greatest of ease. Moreover, he turned what many regarded as a glaring physical defect into an asset that made Christmas possible for millions of children around the world.
"The Red Nosed family categorically denies that Rudolph interfered in any way with oil and natural gas drilling. Moreover, the family does not understand Governor Palin bragging about her shooting prowess at this time of sadness."
Mr. Elf declined to answer questions about whether the Red Nosed family would seek legal redress. "They're not thinking about anything but their grievous loss," he said.