KINGSPORT, TN (WJHL)- This week marks three years since one Tri-Cities family lost their seven-year-old son Weston Keeton.
Weston dreamed of becoming a firefighter, and while Weston was fighting for his life firefighters poured out their love and support for him.
Now on the anniversary of his death, March 23rd, a day the Keeton’s now call his “angel-versary,” his family gives back to those who gave so much joy to their son. Each year the Keetons, with Weston’s seven brothers and sisters, feed local fire departments on that day, an event they call “Feed the Fire.”
Now, though Weston wasn’t able to reach his dream of becoming a fireman to help others, Weston’s life has touched hundreds across the world.
“That’s really important for us, that Weston have a legacy of giving back to others,” Weston’s Mom Julie Keeton said.
After a long battle with his heart and lungs, Weston passed away on March 23rd, 2014.
“I don’t want the kids to ever feel like they can’t be joyous during that time,” Keeton said.
“Having this legacy of Feed the Fire helps remind us how to be brave and our job every day,” Barry Brickey with the Kingsport Fire Department said.
Keeton said last year, “Feed the Fire” fed 195 fire departments across the world.
“We had a lady feed a group in New Zealand, we’ve got Hawaii, we’ve got two in Europe, we have all across the Unites States,” Keeton said.
The Keetons have turned a day of sorrow in to a day that brings joy.
“I think to find beauty in the ashes,” Keeton said. “This has been our healing, this has been our way of getting to do something with our kids to remember Weston but also to thank all of the people that cheered for him,” Keeton said.
She said it’s also a way for his brothers and sisters connect with him, including the youngest who never got to meet her big brother.
“At the end of the day as things are winding down they’ll say ‘Weston would’ve really liked this’ and that always makes it so worth it,” Keeton said.
If you would like to pay it forward in Weston’s honor Thursday you can log on to westonswarriors.com. Keeton said with the interest already shown in this event, this year she expects people across the country to feed 260 fire stations.
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