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Girl, 10, Who Lost Friend To Cancer Donates Gifts To Hopkins Children’s Center

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Gavin's Gifts
Ron Matz 370x278 Ron Matz
Ron Matz is an Emmy award-winning reporter who joined the Eyewitness...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)—She’s only 10 years old but what she’s doing to help sick children in Baltimore is amazing.

Ron Matz has more on a little girl with a mission that all started with the loss of a good friend.

Ten-year-old Emily Nelson is a special little girl. Her good friend Gavin Jacobs was eight when he died three years ago.

“Gavin Jacobs was a local Hampden boy and his hospital was the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, and he died a couple of years ago from cancer,” Nelson said. “His mom and my aunt were close friends. Every day after school I always went to his house.”

So Nelson began collecting money and toys for the kids at the children’s center. They’re Gifts from Gavin.

“When he died I wanted to help the kids because more kids are going to die,”Nelson said. “I want to celebrate his birthday so I’m having a toy drive and we’re also collecting monetary donations. We have 120 toys so far and we’re going to donate them to the kids at Johns Hopkins so we can help them because they don’t really have that much stuff.”

Emily’s mom Lacey is so proud.

“I’m so proud of her. It’s very emotional. It’s overwhelming that she sees the struggle Gavin and his family went through. She saw that she could make a difference and she can,” Lacey Nelson said.

Emily Nelson’s good works couldn’t have happened without the generosity of many businesses on The Avenue and Hampden’s Ravens Roost too.

“The Giant in Hampden, Frazier’s, Cafe Hon, Zissimos and several businesses on 36th Street were very supportive. They loved the idea of what she was doing,” Lacey Nelson said.

“This is what we do. We like to help people in the neighborhood. We jumped on the opportunity to get behind her and support her. We’re so proud of Emily. She’s done an awesome job,” said Stacy Laumann, Ravens Roost #110.

“The Ravens Roost helped us. We went to their February meeting. They donated a check, and I think that added up to $400,” Nelson said.

Emily Nelson is a gift herself and Gavin’s friend forever.

“I think that she’s amazing. I think what she’s doing at 10 just foreshadows the great person that she’s going to be,” Laumann said.

“It makes me feel very good that I’m helping a lot and making a difference,” Nelson said. “Tomorrow we’re going to the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center. We’re taking all the toys and the money. We’re giving it to Johns Hopkins.”

The toys and money will be delivered to the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center on Saturday, Gavin’s birthday, and Emily will continue her fundraising efforts. For more information on how you can help, click here.

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