MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - A man who died in a Myrtle Beach shooting this year was planning on hosting a holiday toy drive for kids in his community.
Last December, Darius Hemingway hosted an event at the Racepath community park to give out toys to kids who otherwise might not have gotten any presents under the tree.
Hemingway was killed in a shooting outside Allen’s Food Basket in October. Despite the loss, his family hosted the event Saturday in his honor.
“Honestly I give all the credit to Darius,” said Jaylen Wright, Hemingway’s cousin. “He wanted to start it, he just called me up and said he lets go get some toys, and I jumped right up and got some for the kids.”
Looking back at last year’s toy drive, Wright said the only reason they even had a drive last year was because of his cousin. This year, Wright also expanded the event to include food and basketball games to bring the community together.
“If you didn’t know Darius, he was a great guy,” said Wright. “Even if he didn’t know you, he would treat you with the same love and respect as if you’ve known him for years. I know it’s what he would have wanted. He just had a big passion for kids in the community. And he always wanted to give back and see smiles on the kids’ faces especially.”
For those who did come, like mother Jaime Spivui, the event goes a long way.
“It’s a big blessing for my kids because they’re raised in a single-parent household,” she said. “Mom can only do so much. So to have the community that’s going to help them, to have a better Christmas.”
While the purpose has always been to help give back, Wright said he couldn’t stop thinking of his cousin on Saturday.
“He would have wanted to see the smiles on the kids’ faces,” he said. “As we’re seeing today, man I just love my big brother, I miss you, man.”
Wright says enough people donated to give 250 kids two toys each, along with some coats as well