Pictured are (from the left): Laura and David Marryatt, with their mother Carol Hayne, and brother Jason Marryatt.

ARICHAT: The family of a young man who succumbed to cancer only a year ago has turned its grief into giving.

The family of the late Jason Marryatt recently completed a toy drive in which they collected six large bins for patients at the IWK Children’s Hospital in Halifax.

The effort was in memory of Jason Marryatt who died on August 20, 2017 at the age of a 21 after a lengthy battle with Ewings Sarcoma.

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“This was the first year we did it,” Jason’s mother Carol Hayne explained. “We kind’ve had a really rough year so we weren’t thinking about anything like that. But this year, in October, I decided I wanted to do something to honour him.”

Hayne recalled that during his illness, her son stayed at the IWK for six months after breaking his femur.

“Everybody was exceptional,” Hayne noted. “They all went above and beyond for us. They were calling him their little princess. They were all great, really.

“He was in great hands. I recommend the IWK highly.”

This is the pile of toys that was recently donated to the IWK Children’s Hospital in Halifax by the family of the late Jason Marryatt.

Explaining she had a “bedroom full of toys” by the end of the drive, Hayne said people dropped off toys to her personally, as well as at the Corner Bridge Store in Petit de Grat, the Charles Forest Co-op in Arichat and Wilson’s Fuels in West Arichat throughout the month of October.

“It was great, very great turn-out,” Hayne said. “People donated money and then we went shopping and picked up some stuff. Then other people just dropped off toys. It was just great.”

Noting there are plans to offer the toy drive annually, Hayne added her thanks to Strait Area Transit for donating a bus and the fuel to travel to Halifax to drop-off the toys on November 7.

“All the workers that had worked with Jason while he was on the sixth floor, they were all there waiting for us,” Hayne recalled. “They all helped unload the bus and load the carts in. It was really nice.”