Family organizing toy drive to remember 3-year-old boy

DENVER – Instead of celebrating the holidays, a Denver family is planning a funeral for their three year old.

Jonathan Munoz-Bilbrey died in a Kansas City children’s hospital last week. His mother’s boyfriend, 21-year-old Lenard Valdez, has been charged with 2nd degree murder after police say he beat the young boy.

“I just love him and I’m going to miss him,” his grandmother Crystal Hunt told FOX31.

Since Jonathan will not get to celebrate Christmas this year, his family has decided to help other children get gifts under the tree. They are holding a toy drive for Children’s Hospital Colorado.

“Christmas is going to be so hard and Thanksgiving is tomorrow and I just want people to have a piece of him and this is my way of giving back,” Hunt said. “Because he would share his toys and he would give back.”

Hunt says she got the idea for the toy drive from Jonathan’s final moments in the hospital.

“I was in a very sad place in the hospital,” she said. “I was just really terrified that these children don’t get Christmas.”

Toys are being collected at AutoNation on Wadsworth Blvd. in Littleton (7980 W Tufts Avenue). The family is asking for new, unwrapped gifts for both boys and girls.

Jonathan’s funeral will be held on Saturday November 25, 2017 at Romero Family Funeral Home (4750 Tejon St, Denver).  His services are open to the public and will begin at 10 a.m.

The family is asking guests to bring a balloon for a balloon release and a toy for the toy drive. You are asked to dress children in superhero costumes and adults may wear superhero t-shirts.

For more information, visit the family’s Facebook page.