BAY DE VERDE, NL - One young boy from Bay de Verde has a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks, despite having to get his tonsils out.
Carson Loveless, a 14-year-old boy with autism, recently got news that he would be heading to St. John's to get his tonsils removed.
Loveless had his surgery scheduled for Friday, Dec. 1. However, no matter how nervous he or his parents may have felt prior to the surgery, Loveless assured everyone he would come out of the ordeal better than ever for one simple reason - he had friends around the world who would be wishing him well.
After hearing this, his neighbour and former school teacher Valda AuCoin decided to take to social media to ensure that Loveless had a happy and successful recovery after the surgery.
AuCoin turned to Facebook, where she made a public post asking for anyone who stumbled across it to write a letter of well wishes to Loveless and mail it to him, so that he could open and read the notes during the relatively lengthy hospital stay that would follow the surgery.
"Carson is just always so happy, and surgery can be stressful for anyone, really," AuCoin told the Compass a couple days prior to Loveless' surgery. "He told his mom and dad 'I'll be okay, I have friends all over the world,' and I figured, through the power of Facebook and the internet, I could help make that a reality."
AuCoin's Facebook status was shared over 100 times by family and friends, and has reached people as far as Calgary and Ontario, who plan to follow up with AuCoin's instructions and send Loveless a get-well note.
As of Friday, Dec. 8, the post had 157 shares, with dozens of comments from people across the country confirming they've sent Loveless a letter.
Since some letters may take several days or even weeks to arrive, Loveless will likely have some letters coming to him even after his return home, but AuCoin said this will only add to his delight.
With several letters already making their way to Loveless' address prior to the surgery, the notes had already begun to do their job. His mother, Sherry Loveless, took to Facebook to thank those that have sent letters, stating they helped quell his nerves the night before his surgery.
"Carson was feeling a bit upset and nervous about his surgery ... so he decided to open the get-well wishes that he received so far," she wrote in the post. "It sure put a smile on his face and made him feel much better."
AuCoin said she's happy to see the response so far, adding she knows Loveless will be over overjoyed to see just how much truth there was to his statement about having friends around the world.
"You see and hear about so many bad things, especially on Facebook, it's like there's no end to it," said AuCoin. "But I think this is a good example of what Facebook can be used for. This young man is going to have so many letters to open, all wishing him a safe recovery, and I think that's amazing. He deserves every one of them."