HAMMOND | Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters members from Local 599 in Hammond recently donated toys to the Rush University Hospital in Chicago.
Every year since their son JJ’s passing, Jim Golub, IKORCC member, and his wife, Susan, have invited JJ’s friends to their home to celebrate his birthday. For his birthday this year, his parents also decided to host a toy drive for all of the patients on the Rush Hospital Pediatric floor.
“JJ was diagnosed with osteosarcoma when he was 15 years old and passed away in October, 2009, when he was 17,” said Jim Golub. “When JJ was receiving treatment at Rush, he said, 'Dad, don’t feel sorry for me, but feel sorry for the little kids here.’
"We hosted a toy drive as a way to honor him and delivered the toys on his actual birthday. We thought that when a toy was given to a child, it would put a smile on their faces for a moment, and that smile would happen because of JJ’s birthday and all who cared about him.”
After hearing about the toy drive, IKORCC members of Local 599 pulled resources together and donated boxes of toys to the toy drive. “We are so, so grateful and appreciate it so much,” said Susan Golub. “Without their help, our toy drive wouldn’t have been complete.
"The toys donated from the union members covered every age group - from babies to teenagers - and we know this is just what JJ would have wanted. We cannot thank them enough.”
The Golub family delivered the toys to the hospital on what would have been JJ’s 22nd birthday. “It was an honor to contribute to such a wonderful cause,” said Tom Dorsey, IKORCC senior supervisor. “Our union is like a family, and when one member experiences a loss, we all band together and do whatever we can to offer support.”