A special paddle-out ceremony was held Friday off Anita Street
Beach in memory of William McMurray, a 12-year-old Laguna Beach boy who
lost his battle with brain cancer on Aug. 7.
YouTube user Darren Smith posted the video above, which documented the afternoon.
William's parents, Penguin Cafe owners Michael and Sabrina, thanked the community in a post on the Supporting William Aiden McMurray Facebook page:
"I have sat here most of the day trying to find the right words that express how I feel. Simply saying thank you to our amazing community, friends and family seems so small, so many made it possible for us to make the most wonderful memories over the past year. Yesterday was an incredible day...it started with William answering my request for a sunny day. The rest of the day could not have been more perfect, from the moment we boarded the boat to the family of deer that gathered on the green. It was the perfect end to an amazingly tough journey. I find it hard to believe that William touched so many in such a short life. He truly was a wonderful little man and I will miss him for the rest of my life."
Many had stopped by the Penguin Cafe in the wake of William's passing and left condolences and tributes on the restaurant's benches. Unfortunately, vandals at some point on Saturday night or Sunday morning smashed much of it onto the ground.
But by Sunday afternoon, people were coming by and building the tribute up again.
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