Gayla Peevey Of 'I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas' Fame Was Only 10 Years Old

By Jacob Shelton
Source: YouTube

“I want a hippopotamus for Christmas, only a hippopotamus will do,” those strange lyrics sung by a cute 10-year-old girl have been stuck in our heads since 1953 when Gayla Peevey implored her parents for an offbeat Christmas wish. Even though the track was a clear novelty song destined for the back half of a thousand Christmas compilations it managed to be a hit in 1953, and it’s so memorable that it’s continued to grow in popularity in spite of the fact that it’s one of the most maddening songs of the holiday season. This Christmas-wrapped earworm may have been a one-off, but it brought far more than the fleeting fame of a one hit wonder to Gayle Peevey.