LASTING MEMORY- Aleta and Rick Neville stand in the Nev Suite at the Ronald McDonald House

City man’s memory to live on in Ronald McDonald House

One of the 11 new suites in the Ronald McDonald House will be named after a Red Deer man who was killed by an impaired driver in 2006.

Brent Neville’s name will be remembered as the Nev Foundation has been working towards getting approval to name a suite after their son.

Brent’s parents Aleta and Rick Neville have been working closely with the Ronald McDonald House and they were thrilled when their son’s Foundation had received approval.

When they lost their son they were struggling and wanted to do something to keep his memory alive. They contacted the David Thompson Health Region to inquire about having a Nev Suite at the Ramada Hotel since it was close enough to the hospital for families to stay while their children were at the hospital. They didn’t know at the time the health region was thinking about building the Ronald McDonald house.

When Aleta heard about the plans she jumped on board and worked closely with the Ronald McDonald House in Calgary to get a room named after her son in the Red Deer house once it was built.

The name Nev was a nickname for Brent because of his last name and it became the basis for the Nev Foundation and now the Nev Suite.

“Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel and doing our own thing we decided to partner up with the Ronald McDonald House and have a room in memory of Brent,” said Aleta.

Out of the 11 suites, the Nev Suite is the only room that is in memory of someone who was not sick and who was killed by a drunk driver.

“Having the Nev Foundation partner with the Ronald McDonald house and also with Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) is just amazing and we know Brent is smiling down on us,” said Aleta.

The total cost of one room at the Ronald McDonald House is $125,000 and the Nevilles will continue to fundraise long after the room is paid for to help with the $1.2 million operating costs of the building.

“The efforts are ongoing and we will always be contributing to try and save other families from going through what we had to go through. (It’s hard) not having Brent at our kitchen table every morning and things like that and you have to keep busy and with these two Foundations I think I will be very busy,” said Aleta.

“The suite is there for the life of the building and it is really good to have something like this room to help keep Brent’s memory alive.”

The Nevilles have used a lot of their own money for the Nev Foundation and will continue to fundraise for the memory of their son.

“We have lived in rural Alberta and we know the value of the people who come into the City and people who are in Brent’s suite will come in and learn about him and his memory will live on,” said Rick.

“Every time we drive by and his friends drive by they can see where Brent’s room is and wonder who is staying there today.”

To learn more about Brent and the Nev Foundation or if you wish to donate, visit www.nevfoundation.com.

tsigurdson@reddeerexpress.com