A Surrey RCMP member says it’s all because of a six-year-old boy’s wish that the detachment plans to collect thousands of dollars and toys in support of an annual toy drive.
Keian’s Holiday Wish Toy Drive began in 2012 when Keian Blundell, who had T-Cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, was just five years old, according to a news release from Surrey RCMP.
This year, the Surrey RCMP will be collecting donations of cash or new, unwrapped toys for BC Children’s Hospital and Canuck Place Children’s Hospice in memory of Keian who was made an honourary member of the RCMP before he passed away from leukemia in 2014.
“Keian’s holiday wish was for every sick child to receive a gift during the holiday season. He lost his battle with leukemia in 2014, but his legacy lives on through this annual toy drive,” RCMP said in a news release.
Surrey RCMP Constable Mark Peterse, who is also lead organizer for the toy drive, said that he got to meet Keian before he passed away. Peterse said that after Keian was diagnosed, he just wasn’t to help others.
“That year, he didn’t want presents. He just wanted other kids to get gifts. To be a six-year-old and have that kind of a soul, I just couldn’t believe it,” he said. “All of this is because of one boy’s wish.”
On Dec. 18, Peterse said detachment members will go to BC Children’s Hospital to donate the funds and toys.
“It’s this big convoy that comes out there. We end up having members in serge, regular members, auxiliary, emergency response,” he said. “Keian had a love for superheroes and police. He always thought that police were superheroes, so we actually have six superheroes that come out.”
Last year, said Peterse, the detachment and Surrey residents raised $3,600 in cash donations and collected more than 4,200 toys for Keian’s Holiday Wish Toy Drive. It was the detachment’s first year taking part in the toy drive.
Donations can be dropped off at the Surrey RCMP’s main detachment (14355 57th Ave.) or at one of the four district offices in Whalley/City Centre, Newton, Cloverdale and South Surrey. The Guildford officer will remain closed until 2019, according to police.
Keian Blundell was an honorary Mountie who lost a hard fought battle with Leukemia in 2014. We support his holiday wish and toy drive for @BCChildrensHosp @CanuckPlace. Learn how you can help: https://t.co/HHDOqeSwdl pic.twitter.com/Ns4lKDJMqf
— Surrey RCMP (@SurreyRCMP) November 29, 2018
Surrey RCMP officers, staff and volunteers will also be on site accepting donations on the following days:
• Saturday, Dec. 8 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Guildford Superstore (14650 104th Ave.)
• Saturday, Dec, 15 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the South Surrey Superstore (2332 160 St.)
Keian’s parents, Chantal and Ryan said that through the toy drive, they “carry on his desire to bring smiles to the children at BC Children’s Hospital and Canuck Place Children’s Hospice.
“Whether they are newborn or nearly 18 years old, every child is important and every child should experience joy and happiness during the holiday season. This was Keian’s wish and this is our mission – year after year. Our community has continually surrounded our family with love; during Keian’s diagnosis, treatment, passing and now as we live through his legacy. We know that Keian would be ecstatic to know his adopted RCMP brothers and sisters are helping his family honour his memory,” Chantal and Ryan said in the release.