Toy trucks are still being collected in memory of Maddox Derkosh, the 2-year-old boy who died at the Pittsburgh Zoo this month, and some of his family and friends hope to make the truck donation drive an annual event.
Maddox, the only child of Jason and Elizabeth Derkosh of Whitehall, was killed when he fell into the African painted dog exhibit while visiting the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium with his mother on Nov. 4.
In the days that followed his death, his family suggested that people donate toy trucks -- Maddox's favorite type of toy -- to be given to children's Christmas charities.
The donations poured in, filling up a large room at the William Slater II Funeral Service in Scott. Less than three weeks after Maddox's death, nearly 4,000 toy trucks have been donated, according to a news release.
"The Derkosh family has been amazed by the support and generosity of the entire community," said Ryan Noone, a cousin of Ms. Derkosh, in a statement. "Maddox was an incredible little boy filled with life and fascinated by the sheer size of trucks. By collecting toy trucks for children in need this holiday season we will ensure Maddox's memory and spirit lives on."
Mr. Noone, along with other family and friends of the Derkosh family, has organized a group called Trucks for Maddox, which aims to continue collecting toy truck donations though the holiday season. The trucks will be distributed to several charities that help children in need.
Toy trucks can be dropped off or mailed to William Slater II Funeral Service in Scott, 1650 Greentree Road, Pittsburgh 15220, or can be taken to any Pittsburgh Fire Department station. A list of stations is available at http://pittsburghpa.gov/fire/districts.htm.
Trucks for Maddox also has a Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/TrucksForMaddox, and a posting on the page says that the organization intends to make the toy truck collection an annual holiday tradition in Maddox's memory.