MASON, Ohio (FOX19) - Blue ribbons are popping up all over Mason in memory of a 9-year-old boy who died on Saturday.
JJ Day was a third-grader at Mason Elementary School.
His parents tell FOX19 the 9-year-old was a kind and friendly boy who went to great lengths to make people smile.
They say they are trying to find the light in the darkness by remembering their son for everything he loved and did.
Some people can step into a room and light it up just because of who they are, even if they are just a young child. For those who knew JJ, his family says that was him.
“He just loved being around people. He loved his friends he loved his family. That boy had so much personality,” JJ’s father Jon said.
JJ was your typical 9-year-old who loved soccer, hanging out with his buddies and his sisters, and playing Fortnite, his parents say.
But, he was also wise beyond his years.
“I called him my 30-year-old because he was so smart, so funny, (had) so much personality and so much love. And he wasn’t afraid to give it,” his father said.
To all who knew JJ, he had the ability to brighten a bad day with his beaming smile and always left a lasting impression on anyone he met.
“The kind of boy that he was, the way that he made you laugh and made you smile, the hugs he gave, the love he gave, we felt he was meant to do really great things,” JJ’s mother Kristen said.
JJ’s father says his son went to sleep Friday night but never woke up Saturday.
His parents say they aren’t sure what caused his death.
They believed JJ would’ve grown up to be a leader.
While his time on earth was cut short, they say they are determined his legacy will live on.
“We always said he was going to change the world and now we’re going to make sure that still happens,” Jon Day said.
On Sunday, Mason community members tied blue ribbons around the trees near JJ’s neighborhood in his honor. Blue was his favorite color.
The Day family says they are thankful for the strong support.
School leaders are asking the community and students to wear blue in JJ’s honor on Monday.
They say they will have additional counselors at the elementary, intermediate, and middle schools.
A GoFundMe also has been set up to raise money for the family.
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