Kurt Thys, manager of Surrey’s Tom Lee Music, and Lorenzo Peretto pose in the store’s acoustic guitar room. Staff at the Guildford music store have purchased a guitar for an eight-year-old boy who is set to undergo open heart surgery for the second time - but they need help to find him. (Photo: Amy Reid)

UPDATE: Surrey music store finds young heart patient they purchased guitar for

Tom Lee Music staff bought the instrument for an eight-year-old boy who has undergone open heart surgery

UPDATE (July 30, 11:30 a.m.): Tom Lee Music staff are pleased to reveal they have located the family, and the boy is set to receive his new guitar this weekend. This story has been corrected to clarify that the boy is not set to undergo a second open heart surgery, as store staff initially thought.

Staff at a Surrey music store are hoping the public can help them find a young boy who touched their hearts, in the hopes they can give him a new guitar they have all pitched in to buy for him.

The story began when the boy’s mother walked into the Tom Lee Music in Guildford, needing to get a used guitar restrung for her son. It didn’t take long for staff to discover her eight-year-old son had undergone open heart surgery, for which he was still receiving follow-up.

The instrument wasn’t in the best shape, said store manager Kurt Thys, adding that he saw “the deflation in her eyes” when he informed the mother the guitar wasn’t worth much.

“Then the story started to come out. She was a really nice lady. Lorenzo is my number one guitar restringer, he takes pride in his work, so I said, ‘Lorenzo, get on it.’ I told him to rock it, to detail that guitar, do whatever you can to make it as good as possible. He’s all smiles, really positive with her,” said Thys.

“Sure enough, we get the guitar up to speed. I come back the next day, and Lorenzo is really taken aback. He says, ‘Last night, the mother came back with the son, he had baked fresh cookies and written him a handwritten thank you about this guitar.’ I was just like, ‘wow.’

“I didn’t meet him personally, but I’m told he’s completely a positively kind kid.”

Lorenzo Peretto beamed as he recalled the boy’s positive demeanour, and the cookies, of course.

“It’s on my fridge at home,” Peretto told the Now-Leader, as he restrung a guitar for another customer at the store Monday afternoon. “It was so unexpected. And baking me a fresh little tin of cookies? Come on,” he said with a smile.

homelessphoto

After that, it didn’t take long for the staff to decide they would all pitch in and buy the boy a new guitar.

“We just thought, we have to do this. We have to do the right thing,” said Thys.

But here’s the problem: By then, the boy and mother were long gone and since they didn’t make a purchase at the store, their names and information were not stored in the company’s system.

“We have a great guitar picked out already,” said Thys, adding that he didn’t want to reveal what type of guitar it is publicly so as to keep it a surprise for the boy. “It’s factory sealed. That’s part of the experience – for him to open up the box that’s all sealed up. We want to present it to him.”

Thys said the store has put a call out on its social media channels for information, but as of early Monday afternoon, no one had come forward.

If the family reads this story, Thys and his staff urge them to call the store at 604-588-3200.

“We have in our kitchen a sign that says, ‘On the darkest nights you see the brightest stars.’ In the darkest hour, this kid is just positive. And there’s a lot of negativity in this area, it’s a Surrey thing, but every once in a while someone walks in and restores your faith in humanity.”

Surrey’s Tom Lee Music store is located at #157-10090 152nd St.



amy.reid@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Amy on Twitter

Just Posted

Bear conservation group wants higher fines for offenders

Maple Ridge Bears wants $500 penalties and earlier garbage collection

Pitt Meadows coach in the corner at epic UFC upset

Scorpion club’s Dan Golkar coached Tristan Connolly

Maple Ridge group saving and finding people for 50 years

Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue celebrates Saturday

Breakout season for senior men’s baseball squad

Maple Ridge Royals win Senior AA provincial title

City puts moratorium on pot-growing applications

Maple Ridge will regulate growing and processing on ALR properties

‘I shouldn’t have done it,’ Trudeau says of brownface photo

Trudeau says he also wore makeup while performing a version of a Harry Belafonte song

35 of 87 dogs in 2018 Williams Lake seizure were euthanized due to behavioural issues, BCSPCA confirm

The dogs did not respond to the behaviour modification and remained terrified of humans

‘We still did not get answers’: Vancouver parents demand expulsion after students’ racist video

‘We were unable to get confirmation from the VSB, but he hasn’t returned as of yet,’ says Marie Tate

B.C. ‘tent city’ disputes spark call for local government autonomy

UBCM backs Maple Ridge after province overrules city

B.C. drug dealers arrested after traffic stop near Banff turns into helicopter pursuit

Antonio Nolasco-Padia, 23, and Dina Anthony, 55, both well-known to Chilliwack law enforcement

‘What goes up will come down’: Gas prices spike in Metro Vancouver

Petroleum analyst Dan McTeague says prices will fall Thursday

B.C. MLA calls on province to restrict vaping as first related illness appears in Canada

Todd Stone, Liberal MLA for Kamloops-South Thompson, introduced an anti-vaping bill in April

Most Read