Fourth grader coordinates bear drive for birthday

Watching your child lay in a hospital bed is a scary thought for any parent, but one hospital stay helped inspire a ‘beary’ special drive.

A 10-year-old boy thought of a special way to use bears like this to help other kids in scary situations.

Both Aaron Smith and his mother laugh that there aren’t two appendixes in the human body. This is because Aaron had his appendix removed one year ago, and remembers how painful the hospital visit was. Smith says he could barely walk, his stomach hurt so bad.

But there was one bright spot in his hospital stay, a small bear the staff gifted him. Smith says, “I remembered that it comforted me to get this teddy bear.”

Aaron said he doesn’t like his scars, but for his 10th birthday he wanted a different kind of present, “I decided to do a stuffed animal drive for kids in scary situations.” Aaron’s mom says he’s always been a generous and giving kid.

Aaron initially set a goal for 500 stuffed animals for his school to collect in the week, but after looking at the levels he decided 200 was a more obtainable goal.

His teachers say his initiative to coordinate a bear drive motivates his friends at school, especially because the prize is a cupcake party for the winning class.

The stuffed animal drive will last through the end of this week. They can be any gently used stuffed animals, not just bears. And if you want to donate, you can drop your donations off at Benton Elementary.

As of Tuesday, the school was a little less than halfway to their donation goal.

The animals will be donated to the Marshall County Ambulance Service, Marshall County hospital, Sheriff’s department, Benton City Police, and Bags of Love.

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