Molly Dunville was born on November 15th of 2015 and for the first 11 months, she lived a normal life with her parents Ian and Kristin and her sisters Lily and Ella. It was at this point that Ian and Kristin noticed changes in their typically happy baby girl and took her to the doctor. At first it was thought that it was a hip infection because Molly was unable to put weight on her leg, but after they did an MRI, they discovered a mass on the adrenal gland and she was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma.
From then until Molly sadly passed away this past April, she was fighting cancer. During her four years of life, Molly relapsed twice. Throughout this time, the Dunville family cherished every memory that they had the opportunity to make with Molly. “Other than the time she spent in the hospital, we tried to let her live a normal life. She was always happy and she handled it so much better than you would think she would. She really didn’t know the difference, because that was all she knew. From time to time, she would get upset, but she would do what she needed to do and then get up and keep going. For a four year old to be the toughest person I know, says a lot about her,” Molly’s father Ian Dunville said.
Because Molly lived much of her life being immunocompromised, it was a blessing to the family to have a park directly across the street from their home. “It was perfect because it wasn’t an overly busy park and she could go there with her sisters and if she got tired, she was close to home,” Kristin Dunville stated.
After Molly passed away, the family sent in a request to the City of Martensville to have the park named after her. The initial request did not fit in with the policy that is in place with the Naming Committee, so was forwarded to Council for approval. “Before we didn’t have a process in place, and the reason that we created one was to ensure that there were guidelines to follow and there wasn’t just requests coming in all of the time where Council would have to decide how to say yes to one and not to another. We wanted clear guidelines that needed to be followed,” City Clerk Carla Budnick explained. The new policy was put into effect in May of 2019.
All requests are required to be approved by Council, not unlike the process for this particular one. Council discussed it and it was decided that Molly’s name would be added to the naming list for Martensville. At the July 21st Council meeting, it was approved that the park, located on McCormack Road would be named ‘Molly Dunville Park’, with signage scheduled to be installed in early fall.
“I feel that by having this park named after her, her name will not be forgotten. Children will play at Molly’s park and I feel like she will live on in other little kid’s lives because they will be able to get joy out of the place that she loved, and for us to hear their laughter will be so special to our family. It is important that people continue to speak her name, and know her story and be inspired by her,” Kristin added. Plans to add a picnic table, bench and trees in Molly’s name within the park are also in place.