Friends and family gathered in a southeast park over the weekend to remember a three-year-old Calgary boy who drowned in a pool during a family vacation in Florida last year.

Saturday's celebration was held to mark what would have been Noah Catto’s fifth birthday.

“He was the light of my life,” said mom Ashley Catto.

“He loved Paw Patrol, singing, bouncy castles. We are just overwhelmed by all the support, we didn't expect it. It just makes my heart have a little bit more hope."

Noah had been swimming in a private pool at a hotel during a family vacation in March 2018 when the tragedy occurred.

He was found by his father, Luke, and died in hospital the following day.

"When he used to hug me, I used to make a fart sound, he was squeezing me too tight, and I miss that. He'd always used to come in a hug and go ‘pfftttt’ in my ear,” said Luke.

The party was held to say thank you to friends, family, and the greater community, for their support.

"It doesn't have to be the end when a child passes tragically, but there's still hope and we want to rally around that,” said Caleb Delamont, the family’s pastor.

Noah’s smile, said Ashley, is what she misses most.

“How he was so gentle with everybody and so kind,” she said.

The Catto family say they have relied heavily on each other, and say their now two-year-old daughter, Abigail, has been a guiding light.

“If it wasn't for her we wouldn't get out of bed,” said Luke.

The Catto’s have also started the Noah Samuel Foundation in their son’s memory, which aims to provide financial support to families who have lost children.

Noah was also an organ donor and helped save three other lives.

(With files from CTV News Calgary's Tyson Fedor)