12-year-old Michigan boy works day and night to raise money to buy gravestone for best friend who died of leukemia
K.J. was diagnosed with leukemia as an infant and endured surgeries throughout his brief life. However, his embattled mother could not afford a headstone for his grave, until now
A 12-year-old boy from Michigan has raised money by working odd jobs in order to purchase a special Christmas gift — a gravestone for his best friend, Daily Mail reports.
According to The Detroit News, Kenneth "K.J." Gross and Kaleb Klakulak, both 12 years of age, had been friends since second grade. Unfortunately, K.J. died of congestive heart failure in May after years of chemotherapy to fight leukemia.
Although K.J. was buried at Detroit's Elmwood Cemetery in a family plot, his mother couldn't afford a grave marker. Ever since, Kaleb has been collecting bottles, raking leaves, and requesting PayPal donations on social media to help raise $2,500 to purchase a headstone — which he hopes to give K.J.'s mother as a Christmas present.
Now, according to the fundraising page, the funds required for K.J.'s headstone have successfully been provided to his mother, LaSondra 'San' Singleton.
"I love Ms. San," Kaleb said. "I was sad she couldn't afford it. I wanted people to be able to find (K.J.'s grave) when they went to see him."
It was Kaleb's mother Kristy Hall who gave him the idea and helped him get started with the fundraising effort. Hall wrote in a Facebook post about Kaleb's goal: "If you have bottles or odd jobs that Kaleb can do to earn money he would greatly appreciate that. I really think this is a great thing for Kaleb to focus on and help him with his healing as well as K.J.'s mom, who misses her baby and has to visit an unmarked grave."
Kaleb's selfless efforts and his love for her son even after his death have been overwhelming for Singleton. According to her, the boys "were kindred spirits; they were like brothers."
"It just speaks volumes to the type of people that they are, and it speaks to the type of person that K.J. was — he impacted people to where they want to do this for him," Singleton said.
Although Kaleb's mother has received the money for the gravestone, you can still chip in here and help her out.