Hamilton

Pokemon Go creators pull Pokestop from baby's Burlington memorial

Kevin Latimer died just days before his second birthday. His memorial will no longer be a Pokestop, where payers can fuel up with Pokeballs, potions, and other energizing features.

Mom Jenny Latimer had said she felt 're-victimized' by the memorial's use in the game

A memorial for Kevin Latimer at St. Luke's Anglican Church in Burlington is also a Pokéstop in the popular Pokémon Go game. Kevin's mom, Jenny, wants the site removed from the game. (Kelly Bennett/CBC)
Kevin Latimer, who died just days before his second birthday, loved to laugh and dance and play in the water, his mom said. (Jenny Latimer)
The Pokestop at a memorial for a boy who died days before his second birthday will be removed, the creators of Pokemon Go say.

Jenny Latimer, the boy's mom, had said the stop's location was hurtful.

"It feels like you're being re-victimized by some silly game," she said.

She told CBC News on Monday she'd heard from Niantic, the creators of Pokemon Go, that the stop would be removed.

The Pokemon Company's consumer marketing director J.C. Smith said in an interview with the Associated Press this week that they're updating the augmented-reality game so it remains fun for players but respects the real world.

Creators of Pokemon Go said Kevin's memorial will no longer be part of the game. The plaque reads: "In loving memory of my courageous little angel, Kevin James Latimer, Feb. 5, 2002 - Feb. 2, 2004, May your love and strength shine through to us forever." (Pokémon Go)

Jenny Latimer installed the memorial at the Burlington church where Kevin was christened using money raised from friends and family. Her son, Kevin, died in 2004 after falling out a third-storey window. 

Kevin was in the care of his father, who was estranged from Latimer, when he fell. 

Kevin's death spurred a larger provincial conversation around visitation and parental rights and supervision when Latimer campaigned in his memory.

She was successful in changing provincial law to tighten protections for vulnerable children when parents are separated. 

"We did a lot to change laws in his memory and make things positive – you know, such a tragic loss," she said. "I just don't want to see it come to being part of a game. It's hurtful."

With files from Associated Press

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