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Third Graders Surprise Classmate Who Lost Everything In Fire With Secret Toy Drive

One third grade class recently gave their fellow classmate the surprise of a lifetime when they threw a secret toy drive and collected a pile of new toys to replace the ones the boy had lost in a house fire, CNN reported.

After his family suffered the devastating loss of their home, 8-year-old Daniel Hunt walked into his Philadelphia Elementary School class and saw his thoughtful peers had gone to great lengths to replace his destroyed toy collection.

Just one week ago, Daniel watched as his family home and all his toys went up in flames.

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Thankfully no one was hurt, but the family lost nearly everything they owned in the destruction.

"It was a kitchen fire," his mom, Kristen Wilburn, explained. "I'm not sure how it happened, we found some bits and pieces that were salvageable — my wedding ring made it — but nothing else made it."

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It was Daniel's teachers who came up with the idea to throw a secret toy drive for him.

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"We live in a small community in Tennessee," his homeroom teacher, Case MacKintosh, said. "Word of the fire traveled quickly and by Monday, everyone just wanted to help."

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According to school counselor Kelly Jones, the students were more than happy to help out.

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They spent the entire week sneaking toys into the classroom to add to the steadily growing stockpile.

"The kids could not wait to do this for Daniel," she told Today. "It was amazing to witness the excitement these third-grade kids had while sneaking in toys."

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The children also made sure to show Daniel extra support in other ways throughout the week while his family recovered from the devastating fire.

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"The entire week, they couldn't love him enough," Jones said. "People were holding doors for him, getting his pencil ready for him each morning, taking his chair down from the desk for him to sit in, and swarming him at recess."

At no point did any of the kids let the surprise slip: "They kept the best secret!"

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On Friday, Daniel was sent out of the classroom on an errand and when he returned, he received a chorus of "Surprise!" from his peers.

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They presented the speechless boy with a pile of brand new toys, including board games, stuffed animals, footballs and Pokemon.

"He said, 'I love it! Everyone come here,' with his arms wide open," Jones recalled. "The kids immediately swarmed in for a large group hug."

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The school shared photos from the wonderful surprise to Facebook in a post that's quickly gone viral.

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"Last week, one of our Warriors, Daniel Hunt, lost all of this belongings in a house fire," the post was captioned. "His 3rd grade teachers and classmates started a secret toy drive for him to replace the toys he lost. He received the toys today and he was so surprised and thankful!"

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Daniel's mom said he was brought to tears and had the feeling of "joy in his stomach."

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"Daniel has been in awe on how many people have been willing to help us without being asked," she told CNN.

The family is currently living with relatives until they figure out where to go from here.

h/t: Today, CNN, Facebook | Philadelphia Elementary School

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