Toronto, Ontario – July 13, 2018 -- Darrell Pitman will forever carry around a reminder of the impact he made on the lives of approximately 80 children living with severe physical disabilities or life-threatening illnesses.
The North Bay resident chose to have one of the children's drawings tattooed on his arm, as a way of remembering his one-day adventure with the kids to Walt Disney World resort in Orlando, Florida.
“It’s to commemorate the Sunshine DreamLift program,” said Pitman. “A young boy designed the tattoo for me. Hopefully, it will help promote the program and get some more money for the kids."
Pitman was chosen as a chaperone for the event following his family-owned company, P and G Auto Parts, being recognized for collecting the most tires for the Ontario Auto Recyclers Association tire take back event.
“They’ve been doing it for a few years,” said Pitman. “You have a certain time period to collect scrap tires, and all the proceeds from that goes to support the Sunshine Foundation which organizes the DreamLift.”
Pitman’s company donated approximately 2,000 tires this year, resulting in $2,000 being donated to the Sunshine Foundation.
Children aged ten to sixteen joined Pitman on the trip to Disney, with it being most of the children’s first time ever being away from their parents.
“A lot of kids would never get the chance to do it, some have never been away from their parents before in their life,” said Pitman. “The emotion they show is unreal. They’re so ecstatic. All their worries are gone for a day.”
This year was Pitman’s second trip with the foundation, with his last opportunity coming back in 2013.
“It’s a life-changing experience,” said Pitman. “One little guy I was with uses a wheelchair and can’t talk, but he’s the happiest kid you’d ever want to see in your life. You can see by the expression on his face. All the kids are just so great.”