FORSYTH COUNTY — Bubba Hunter was careful to save the seeds he carved out of a pumpkin with his father. He wanted to plant them when he became well enough to leave the hospital and deliver pumpkins to other children receiving treatment the following year.
Bubba didn’t get to plant those seeds, but his father, Forsyth County Sheriff’s Lt. Tommy Hunter, still carries on his son’s dream as a way to honor him, 19 years later.
Every year since his 11-year-old son, whose real name was Thomas Paul, succumbed to neuroblastoma — a rare type of childhood cancer — Hunter has delivered loads of pumpkins to the children at Scottish Rite Hospital in Atlanta.
Burt’s Pumpkin Farm in nearby Dawson County, which always provides the pumpkins, donated more than 250 this year.
“Those of us who have worked with [Lt. Hunter] know he does so many things to remember his son and honor him,” said Robin Regan, a spokesman for the sheriff’s office. “He keeps mementos on his desk and always talks about him. Everything he does, he does to honor his son.”