Langley family runs annual Christmas toy drive in memory of son with an ‘old soul’

Langley family runs annual Christmas toy drive in memory of son with an ‘old soul’

Keian Blundell passed away in 2014 when he was six years old

A young Langley boy was discharged from BC Children’s Hospital just in time to be at home on Christmas Day 2012 to open gifts with his family.

Instead, Keian Blundell adorned a Santa hat, loaded up all the gifts in a wagon, and returned to the hospital to share those gifts with 16 kids on the ward who wouldn’t make it home.

“It really showed how much older he was. He had an old soul,” Ryan Blundell, Keian’s father, told the Langley Advance Times.

And again, the very next year, Keian was able to return again with a wagon full of Christmas cheer.

READ MORE: RCMP honour Langley boy’s wish by continuing his toy drive for sick kids

“He understood what was important,” Ryan said. “He still was a child at heart, but he also knew that… he was lucky to still have some resemblance of a normal life.”

Keian was diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia in January 2012 and passed away in January 2014 at the age of six.

But his family keeps his tradition alive.

Now, his family runs an annual toy drive benefiting BC Children’s Hospital and Canuck Place, alongside a bottle drive to support families whose children are receiving treatment.

The family will be hosting the annual Team Keian bottle drive on Saturday, Nov. 16 at the Real Canadian Superstore parking lot at 19851 Willowbrook Dr. in Langley.

READ MORE: Fraser Valley gets a jump on the holiday season

“We wanted to do it, because we had benefitted from somebody doing a bottle drive to help raise money for us… we wanted to make sure that the families had support… just to give that bit of relief, albeit temporary, so they can focus on the most important thing which is family,” said Ryan.

The family started the bottle drive in the fall of 2014. Ryan estimates the recycling campaign has raised about $10,000.

“We have an idea what families go through when it comes to this and this makes an impact on them so they don’t have to worry about where [their] food is going to come from next,” said Ryan.

In addition to collecting recyclable at the bottle drive this month, the family will also be accepting cash donations.

Those who are unable to make it to the grocery chain can take their recyclables to the Langley Bottle Depot at 20137 Industrial Ave. and apply the donations to the account Team Keian.

In addition to the bottle drive, Keian’s Holiday Wish Toy Drive is happening now until Dec. 13.

New and unwrapped toys can be dropped off at Kids in the Grove at West Langley Elementary (9403 212th St.), Garaventa Lift (18920 36th Ave. in Surrey), at any Surrey RCMP detachment, Burnaby RCMP (6355 Deer Lake Ave.), any Burnaby Community Police office, and Princess Auto (15 King Edward St. in Coquitlam).

Donated toys must be unwrapped so they can be sorted and gifted to children with their age in mind, according to Ryan. He also suggested the public donate gift cards.

“We want to help spread his love, share his story and inspire others,” said Ryan about carrying out Keian’s legacy.


@JotiGrewal_
joti.grewal@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

LETTER: Writer questions spread of variant and timing of vaccinations

Will there ever be a return to normal, or will people need to invest in respirators?

A family of geese wandered through the beach area of Whonnock Lake recently. (Heather Colpitts/Black Press Media)
VIDEO: Whonnock Lake visitors marvel at cute goslings

Defecating fowl can also bring with them potential issues for Maple Ridge park

Edward Wang shared this picture of an alpaca amid a field of hay in Pitt Meadows, seeking a little shade under the summer-like skies. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Grazing in the field

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon

Sandie Bannie is opposed to Pitt Meadows council move to put an RCMP detachment in a park. (Special to The News)
LETTER: Pitt Meadows resident opposed to costly RCMP detachment for small population

Letter writer urges residents to voice opposition before June 28 deadline

Dylan Ross, a Maple Ridge resident for 25 years, is like so many other local residents. He gravitates to the local trails and waterways for a little relaxation. He shared a few pictures along the local dikes near Sharpe Road during a recent kayaking adventure. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Regular relaxation retreat

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

(Black Press Media files)
Burnaby RCMP look for witnesses in hit-and-run that left motorcyclist dead

Investigators believe that the suspect vehicle rear-ended the motorcycle before fleeing the scene

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

A police pursuit involving Abbotsford Police ended in Langley Saturday night, June 20. (Black Press Media file)
Abbotsford Police pursuit ends in Langley with guns drawn

One person arrested, witnesses say an officer may have been hurt in collision with suspect vehicle

Most Read