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Online store Blaze launched in memory of Dartford boy who died from rare DIPG brain cancer


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A girl who lost her brother to cancer has launched an online store in his memory.

Benjamin Shaw, from Dartford, passed away on March 23 following a seven-month battle with a rare form of brain cancer which affects around 50 children a year.

Ellen launched Benjamin's product in memory of her brother. Picture: Sam Shaw
Ellen launched Benjamin's product in memory of her brother. Picture: Sam Shaw

During a holiday to Spain with his family in 2018, Benjamin bought a notebook and began to design his own brand, Blaze.

Inspired by his favourite YouTubers, he designed hats, books, pens, shorts, t-shirts and many other items all emblazoned with the Blaze logo.

But in August last year, Benjamin was diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG). He died seven months later.

His mum Sam, 44, said: "It's a vicious, awful, awful disease. There's not enough research, there's not enough money in it.

"It hurts because it's too late for Benjamin. We just don't want anyone else, the kids who have it and their families, to have to go through what we've been through.

Benjamin passed away in March. Picture: Sam Shaw
Benjamin passed away in March. Picture: Sam Shaw

"No one deserves that, the kids or the families. Benjamin was the brave one."

The 11-year-old used his time in hospital to perfect his brand and it is now his legacy after sister Ellen, 14, launched it online.

"When he fell ill last August, he added more to the book while he was in hospital with the help of his sister. They were very close," added Sam.

"When he passed away Ellen said 'I want it to be his legacy, I'm going to do it for him. I'm doing this to keep him alive'. I'm unbelievably proud.

"We've set up a room which is now the Blaze room. Ellen launched a website, a Facebook page and and Instagram page – she set up everything herself."

(From left) Sam Shaw, Owen Shaw, Ellen Shaw, Benjamin Shaw and Mark Shaw out celebrating the end of Benjamin's 13th radiotherapy session last September. Picture: Sam Shaw
(From left) Sam Shaw, Owen Shaw, Ellen Shaw, Benjamin Shaw and Mark Shaw out celebrating the end of Benjamin's 13th radiotherapy session last September. Picture: Sam Shaw

Profits made by the online store are donated to Abbie's Army which raises money to help fund research into DIPG.

Sam, who lives in Darenth Park Avenue with husband Mark, 44, daughter Ellen and son Owen, 16, thanked everyone who has purchased from the store which has so far raised around £1,500.

She said: "Thank you for your support, it means so much. Benjamin would love the fact his products are out there. It's keeping his memory alive."

Ellen has planned a line of summer essentials ahead of next month.

Sam added: "She has lots of things planned for the future. We want to keep it going for as long as we can to raise as much money as we can and help in some way."

You can visit the store here.

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