On April 17th, at the beginning of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, an unimaginable tragedy struck the Hunstable family. Overwhelmed by the drastic effects of the pandemic on his family and lifestyle, Hayden Hunstable took his own life just four days before his 13th birthday. The devastated family, eager to make a difference in the lives of other children affected severely by COVID-19, shared Hayden’s story with the rest of the world.
Now Dream Tank, along with the Robert Jones Black Foundation, has put together the Kindness Challenge, a contest for the world’s youth that encourages kids from all different backgrounds to support each other through this trying time by sending in videos and tributes of kindness. Dream Tank is challenging children and adults alike to come together in spirit, if not in person, and live an extraordinary boy’s thirteenth year for him.
Please take the time to watch this video in full – it is a PSA an extraordinary group of families have put together in just FOUR DAYS. We wanted to release it as a birthday present on Hayden’s birthday.
Hayden’s story has inspired us all, fortifying our trust in each other as we make new connections and are reminded why, even in this time of crisis, the word “unity” is present in “humanity”.
From an act of desperation, a community of support and harmony was born.
From Hayden’s loneliness, so many were brought together.
Our mission is to celebrate not just Hayden, but the millions of brilliant minds, hearts, and souls whose voices are drowned out by the constant commotion of the world. We have reflected on his suffering and have strived to make fundamental changes in our own lives, with our own families, that ensure no one has to go through what he did again. We have made dear friends out of complete strangers and have had the privilege to call people living across the world family.
Hayden, you are heard. You are loved.
And as your eyes closed, the world’s eyes opened.
-Amalia Rose Battle (age 12)