Grieving Dad Who Lost 6-Year-Old To Cancer Uses His Ashes To Make A Leg Tattoo Of Them Together

Grieving dad who lost 6-year-old son to cancer uses his ashes to get a tattoo on his leg so they can be together as he runs a marathon in his memory

  • Kev Pitcher, 47, of East Runton, Norfolk, was inked in memory of six-year-old Ben
  • Son died last year, nine months after he was diagnosed with a brain tumor
  • Will run marathon on Sunday in memory of his son with a group of supporters

A grieving father will always have his late “superhero” son with him after using his ashes to get a tattoo on his leg.

Kev Pitcher, 47, of East Runton, Norfolk, was inked in memory of six-year-old Benny and will even run a marathon so they can do it “together.”

Tragic Ben passed away last year after losing a battle with cancer. Kev has mixed Benny’s ashes with ink in a tattoo on his leg, showing father and son walking off into the distance.

It also includes the words, ‘You don’t have to be 6ft 6in to be a superhero’.

Kev Pitcher, 47, of East Runton, Norfolk, was inked in memory of six-year-old Benny and will even run a marathon so they can do it 'together'

Kev Pitcher, 47, of East Runton, Norfolk, was inked in memory of six-year-old Benny and will even run a marathon so they can do it ‘together’

Tragic Ben died last year after losing a battle with cancer

Tragic Ben died last year after losing a battle with cancer

Kev has mixed Benny's ashes with ink in a tattoo on his leg showing father and son walking off into the distance

Kev has mixed Benny's ashes with ink in a tattoo on his leg showing father and son walking off into the distance

Tragic Ben, left, died last year after losing a battle with cancer. Kev has mixed Benny’s ashes with ink in a tattoo on his leg, right, showing father and son walking away in the distance

And Kev is now going to run a marathon in memory of his son on Sunday (August 8) with a group of supporters.

Proceeds will go to East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH), Cromer Children’s Charity and a third charity Kevin and his wife Julie are setting up called Benny’s Battalion that will support other families with children with cancer.

Kev, who runs a cleaning and laundry business with Julie, said the tattoo will ensure little Benny is with him when he crosses the finish line.

He added: “He’s going to run that marathon with me – he’s going to start and finish the race with me.

Kev, who runs a cleaning and laundry business with Julie, said the tattoo will ensure little Benny is with him when he crosses the finish line.

Kev, who runs a cleaning and laundry business with Julie, said the tattoo will ensure little Benny is with him when he crosses the finish line.

Kev, who runs a cleaning and laundry business with Julie, said the tattoo will ensure little Benny is with him when he crosses the finish line.

Benny died last year after being diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) nine months earlier — a type of tumor that begins in the brainstem

Benny died last year after being diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) nine months earlier — a type of tumor that begins in the brainstem

Kev at his son's grave

Kev at his son's grave

Benny, left, died last year after being diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) nine months earlier — a type of tumor that begins in the brainstem. Right: Kev at his son’s grave

“One of my boldest statements is, ‘You don’t have to be six feet tall to be a superhero’. You can be a huge guy and still be as weak as anything lying in a hospital.

‘Benny’s ashes were mixed in ink by my very good friend Rob Foster – he owns Inkspired Tattoo in Cromer.

What is a diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG)?

A diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) is the second most common type of high-grade brain tumor in children.

The cancers start in a part of the brainstem called the pons, which is responsible for vital functions such as breathing, sleeping and blood pressure.

Because the tumors grow in such a sensitive and important part of the brain, it is too dangerous to operate on them, so they are considered incurable.

Most diagnoses occur in children between the ages of five and ten.

The cause of the tumor remains unknown, but mIt is believed that more than 90 percent of patients die within 18 months of diagnosis.

Every year there are about 100 to 150 new diagnoses in the US and between 20 and 30 in the UK.

Symptoms include lack of vision control, double vision, headache, vomiting, weakness, seizures and balance problems.

One of the early indicators of cancer is a child falling, stumbling, or losing balance.

Source: The charity for brain tumors

“I heard from the grapevine that you could do it, and thought, ‘I’m going to do it for Benny’. I’m not willing to let my six-year-old’s name disappear.”

Benny died last year after being diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) nine months earlier — a type of tumor that begins in the brainstem.

Kev recalls: “We went on vacation as a family and he went for a ride in Skegness. Everything seemed to be fine, but he came off the ride and the side of his face slumped.

“Two days later we were told we had nine months. The little man didn’t stand a chance.’

Originally, a group of runners had made a commitment to run the 2020 Brighton Marathon with Kev on April 19. But due to the pandemic, they were unable to organize the event as it was postponed.

Kev is looking to fulfill his promise to Benny by running the 26 miles at the Poppy Line Marathon, starting at Sheringham Primary School and finishing near The Crown PH this weekend.

Of the fundraiser, Kev added, “When people want to donate to charities great. But most importantly, I want people to know about my boy.”

To donate to the fundraiser, click here.

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