Disney asked a grieving family to remove the temporary Spiderman headstone marking the grave of 4-year-old Ollie.
After they were told they could not have the Spiderman headstone, the family has received great support from all over the world as they fight to preserve their son’s memory.
Ollie’s dad, Lloyd Jones, said: “We put up a temporary plastic grave last week. I loved it and I’m sure Ollie does too. The council told us to take it down as soon as they found out. They told us we couldn’t have it.”
He made the statement days after leaving the hospital. He had suffered from severe chest pains brought on by stress.
The father of six said: “I’m trying to take it a bit easier. I threw myself into work after Ollie died, now I think I need to slow down a bit.”
Disney denied the family’s request to have the headstone because it wanted to “preserve the innocence” of the character.
Media from the US, Asia, and Europe have turned their attention to the family, waiting to gain more knowledge about Disney’s refusal.
The family is confused by the refusal since Marvel – owned by Disney – approved another family’s request to have Iron Man on a headstone last year.
The family was contacted by a US copyright lawyer who offered to take on Disney on their behalf, pro bono.
Jones said: “My brother got a letter through from a lawyer. It says he has taken on Disney before and won. I don’t know exactly how it all works, but it’s nice there’s all this support.”
A petition asking Disney to reconsider the decision has been signed by over 140,000 people. Faversham and Mid Kent MP Helen Whately also asked Disney to reconsider its decision.
Disney has not offered any response to the petition, and has yet to explain why the Iron Man headstone was approved while the Spiderman one wasn’t.
A Maidstone Borough Council spokeswoman stated: “Sadly, all types of headstones have to adhere to copyright and whilst we understand that this is a very emotional time for the family, we have asked them to remove it. Maidstone Borough Council Bereavement Services team will do everything they can to help the family.”