November 10, 2013
The average 13-year-old probably expects presents on his birthday, but a Charlottesville boy is giving the gift of warmth to hundreds of kids to celebrate his big day.
Ashton Ryan held his second Birthday Coat Drive in Charlottesville on Sunday. More than 300 coats were dropped off to be redistributed to kids without one this winter.
Ashton's inspiration for the big birthday event was seeing a Buford Middle School classmate go without a jacket in the cold.
"I saw a kid without a coat at school one time. I almost took mine off and gave it to him," Ashton said. "The nurse stopped me. I said, 'Hey, mom, why don't we do a coat drive?"
Last year's birthday bash collected more than 560 coats.
"We already have emails coming in from kids who need coats and families that need help," said Kim Ryan, Ashton's mom. "Anything we can do to help them, that's what we're here for."
Every coat needs to be dry cleaned before it can be delivered to a kid in need. Ashton is also collecting money to help with that bill.