May 27, 2018
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Orrington boy exceeds goal of 2,012 toys for needy kids

By Judy Harrison, BDN Staff

ORRINGTON, Maine — Brayden Mott’s bedroom looked like a department-store window display with toys neatly stacked from the floor to near the ceiling.

There were games, trucks, books, dolls, puzzles, cars and a plethora of stuffed animals.

Still, the 8-year-old boy was not satisfied.

As of Thursday afternoon, the second-grader was 80 toys short of his goal — 2,012 gifts for underprivileged children this Christmas.

“I like to give back to the community,” he said, surrounded by the 1,932 he had collected so far in 2012.

What he did not know Thursday afternoon was that enough toys, gift cards, cash and checks were waiting for him at the Maine Discovery Museum in downtown Bangor to put him over the top by at least 15 toys.

The toys will be distributed through the Toys for Tots program.

Brayden spearheaded a similar toy drive in 2011, but on a much smaller scale. He collected 322 toys in the two weeks before Christmas.

The son of Heather and Shawn Mott said his desire to help children less fortunate than himself was sparked a year ago after he saw a television news story about homelessness in Florida.

“We talked a lot about different people who aren’t as fortunate as we are,” Heather Mott, 36, said Thursday. “He’s a very compassionate and helping person, so I’m not surprised that he did it. I didn’t think it would hit the level that we’re at.”

Brayden said he reached out to family members in Canada and his parents’ friends scattered across the globe for assistance in reaching his goal. He received boxes of toys, gifts cards, cash and checks, his mother said.

The Maine Discovery Museum helped collect the toys, as did the Bangor Region Leadership Institute. Last week, Brayden celebrated his birthday. Guests brought a gift for him and one to donate.

There is one thing thing this holiday season that Brayden has not had time to do.

“I’ve been too busy thinking about other people,” he said. “I can’t even make out my own Christmas list.”

Toys, gift cards and donations may be dropped off at the Maine Discovery Museum, 74 Main St., Bangor. Check should be made out to Toys for Tots.

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