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Marner again brightens day for girl with cancer

Maple Leafs forward gifts shopping spree to 6-year-old, her little sister

by Mike Zeisberger @Zeisberger / Staff Writer

Mitchell Marner once again has put a smile on the face of Hayden Foulon.

The generosity of the Toronto Maple Leafs forward and his family resulted in a shopping spree at a Toys R Us store for Hayden, 6, and her sister Harlow, 2, near the Foulon family home in London, Ontario, on Wednesday.

"I can't thank Mitch and his family enough for being such giving people and consistently making Hayden happy," Hayden's mother, Lindsay, said Thursday. "That means more to me than anything.

"Every time she'd pick up a toy, she'd say, 'Mommy, do you think Mitch One-Six would like this?'"

Video: Mitch Marner super fan Hayden Foulon says hello

Hayden has had acute lymphoblastic leukemia for almost five years. She was declared cancer-free in the spring, but a follow-up test in July revealed cancerous cells.

Hayden first met Marner, then a forward for London of the Ontario Hockey League, when he toured the Children's Hospital at London Health Sciences Centre in 2015. Their friendship has blossomed ever since.


[RELATED: Marner has 'hero' in 6-year-old Hayden Foulon]


When Hayden was being treated for an E. coli infection last month, Marner and his family sent Toys R Us gift certificates for Hayden and her sister, hoping it would provide some Christmas cheer.

"We finally had the chance to use them on Wednesday, and it certainly did," Lindsay Foulon said.

Paul Marner, Mitchell's father, was glad to hear the presents provided joy for the Foulon family.

"They've been through a lot," he said. "Mitch has been friends with Hayden for a long time. They have a special relationship, and we've developed the same with her family.

"If we could provide some cheer to them, it makes us happy too."

Mission accomplished.

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