ANDERSON TOWNSHIP, Ohio (WKRC) - It's been nearly four years since Army veteran Brad Giesting passed away from a rare form of cancer.
"He died of cancer, and he was a soldier and fought in Iraq and got exposed to burn pits and got a very rare cancer: liposarcoma,” said Jerry Giesting, Brad’s father.
Each year, the Giesting family celebrates his life by helping others through the Brad’s Blessing Foundation and Random Act of Kindness Day on Oct. 22 -- the day Brad passed away.
The week leading up to the 22nd is extremely busy as Sunshine Boxes are put together for people with cancer or other illnesses. Later in the week, goody bags for children at the Ronald McDonald House will be assembled and delivered. In addition to the specific acts of kindness, Brad’s Blessing wants you to do something too: Buy a meal for a stranger, a cup of coffee, anything nice for someone.
"Brad wanted to thank people for the kindness he received and that's what we want to do in his memory,” said Jerry.
But this year is a little different. Like many charitable foundations, the coronavirus has presented challenges in accomplishing missions. The virus put the pause on the foundation's biggest fundraisers, a golf outing, and is threatening the upcoming comedy show.
"The community is still rallied around us. We got a massive amount of donations this year, so the bags and boxes that are going out -- probably about a $250 value for each one,” said Brad’s sister, Sarah DiFrancesca.
Brad's father says because of COVID-19, they got to help some very important people: veterans.
"During this pandemic, we’ve been able to help some homeless veterans suffering from cancer. We were able to get them some shelter,” said Jerry.
On the east side, it’s hard to miss Brad‘s billboards and signs at his former schools asking for your help too. Be sure to post your Random Act of Kindness to the Brad’s Blessings Facebook page.