Karina Moreira, 16, whose blog “chic by karina” caught the attention of supermodel Gisele Bundchen, Taylor Swift, and thousands of followers on social media, died Thursday evening, according to her mother Daniela Xavier.
“I am so proud of [Karina],” she said. “With everything that she went through, she still had hope and faith in God. She never gave up or complained.”
Moreira, a Malden resident, was diagnosed with bone cancer in 2011 at 13. In late 2012, she was in remission and began a fashion blog sharing playful advice. But last year the cancer returned. She was being treated for osteosarcoma at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
The family posted on the chic by karina Facebook page to inform friends and fans of her death. Bundchen sent her condolences to the family through Instagram Thursday night.
A fan of the blog, the supermodel made a surprise visit to the Moreiras’ home last December and made a video with Karina. Bundchen told Xavier: “I came here to bring something, but I am going home with something in my heart.”
Since the visit, Karina and Bundchen have stayed in contact through email and social media, her mother said. For New York Fashion Week earlier this fall, Bundchen arranged tickets for Karina to attend, helping the young fashionista check off an item from her bucket list.
“It was Karina’s dream come true,” said her mother.
Karina’s optimism and style attracted droves of fans to her blog and Instagram page, especially from her home country of Brazil. She appeared on a popular Brazilian news show called “Fantastico” in January.
She also video blogged for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and was chosen as a 2014 Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk Hero.
“She had a mission here to learn no matter what,” said Xavier. “I feel like a special mom, I have a special angel.”
The family will hold a public service from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday at Malden High School. Visitors are asked to wear white.
A fund-raiser account on gofundme is set up to help Karina’s family with expenses.
The Moreira family’s post on the chic by karina Facebook page:
Bundchen’s Instagram Thursday night:
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Last year I met a special girl, she inspired me and so many others with her strength, positivity and love for life. Today she became an angel. RIP @chicbykarina. Sending all my love to her family.❤️🙏❤️🙏❤️ No ano passado eu conheci uma menina muito especial, que inspirou a mim e a tantas outras pessoas com sua força, positividade e amor pela vida. Hoje, ela se tornou um anjinho. Descanse em paz @chicbykarina. Mandando todo meu amor para sua família @daniela_xavier.