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Online campaign to raise money for toddler's funeral tops $100K

An online fundraiser, which was set up to raise money for the funeral of a three-year-old boy who died after being found without vital signs in the bitter cold, has surpassed the $100,000 mark.

Elijah Marsh wandered from an apartment building near Allen Road and Highway 401 around 4 a.m. on Thursday.

He was found tucked in a corner behind a house around 10 a.m., about six hours after he was captured on the building’s surveillance footage, leaving on his own.

The fundraiser, which is set up through Tilt.com, was originally looking to raise $20,000 for the funeral. As of 7:21 a.m., it surpassed that goal and was at $20,182.

As of 5:17 p.m., it was just over $119,700 and continuing to grow.

Justin Kozuch — the 36-year-old father of two, including a three-year-old — launched the campaign on Thursday night, and told 680News he was not expecting to raise this much money.

“I am blown away. I was expecting to raise $10,000. I was not expected to raise the amount of money that we did,” Kozuch said.

He said every single cent will be given to the family.

“So, every dollar that we’ve raised over the course of the campaign, which ends on Sunday at 5 p.m., every dollar will be donated to the family,” he said.

Kozuch said he is trying to get in contact with Elijah’s family through someone who is very close to them

“I am working with a few individuals to make contact with them and figure out how we can provide them or give them the money that we’ve raised in a way that is respectful,” Kozuch said.

Tilt.com has waived credit card fees for all donors.

The campaign hasn’t been sanctioned by Elijah’s family. A family friend told CityNews that they are grateful and will be in touch with Justin.

 

 

 

With files from Charlene Close and Patrick Luciani