LEWISTON — Earlier this year, Brayden Bashaw announced he was going to raise $5,000 to buy toys and other items for patients at area hospitals.

That is pretty bold talk for the 12-year-old from Auburn, but nobody doubted him — and with good reason. Brayden has been selling Christmas ornaments for several years now, and when the boy sets himself a goal, he does what he must to meet it.

And then some.

Instead of $5,000, Brayden made $7,500 this year and, as is his custom, he is using the dough to help others. On Wednesday, he and his family were at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston to donate toys he had bought for sick children.

“They were great,” Brayden said. “All the nurses came out and said thank you. They brought in a doctor so I could talk to him. I told them I want to be a doctor when I get older.”

But that’s not all. With the money raised through ornament sales and other efforts, Brayden bought four Brady Buggies, which are specialized trailers for sick children who need to haul around IV poles. The buggies sell for $1,000 each.

Two of the buggies will be donated to the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital and the others will be handed over to CMMC and St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center. The buggies, which are handmade, will be delivered in January.

That is not a bad profit margin for a kid who started out selling his homemade ornaments door to door at his grandparents’ campground in Naples.

Now that his goal has been exceeded, Brayden said, he might just kick back and relax. Not for long, though. His plans are already underway for what has become an impressive tradition of ornament sales and generosity.

“I am definitely going to do it next year, too,” Brayden said. “I think we’ll come up with something new for the ornaments.”

Brayden Bashaw with some of the gifts he has given to hospitalized children at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. Bashaw, of Auburn, had an initial goal of raising $5,000 to buy the gifts. He surpassed it, raising $7,500. The 12-year-old organized everything himself, from creating and selling his homemade ornaments and securing donations from area businesses for a silent auction to planning and budgeting purchases. (Andree Kehn/Sun Journal)


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