Naperville Boy Designs Sneakers for Pancreatic Cancer

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A Passion for Sneakers

“I’m like what you would call a sneakerhead,” said 12-year-old Wes Selby.

He’s always had a passion for sneakers, and when his grandmother Lee Lee was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in August, he wanted to help out.

He created his own brand, W3S, and designed a special pair of shoes online, hoping to sell enough preorders to meet production minimums.

“He had to sell seven in order for them to go into production,” said Wes’ mom Kiersten Selby. “So at that point, I posted on my Facebook and he sold 10. And so they went into production and then I really realized, like, holy cow this is going to happen. Wes has sold 27 pair so far.”

Custom-Designed Sneakers

Everything about the Moonflag12 shoe was custom-designed by Wes – from the color scheme and material to more personal touches like the inside of the tongue and name, which was inspired by Lee Lee herself.

“His inspiration for the design was because I always told him I loved him to the moon and back and he kind of meshed the two together,” said Wes’ grandmother Arlene Tallis, known to her family as Lee Lee. “I found out about this right before Christmas and it really took me to my knees.”

One hundred percent of Wes’ proceeds from the Moonflag12 sales are donated to pancreatic cancer charities like the Lustgarten Foundation and PanCan Action Network.

“I don’t need money, I don’t pay rent,” joked Wes. “And when my grandma was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer I sort of thought, ‘oh I can use this to sort of help out in a way and contribute back.’”

And Wes wasn’t done yet.

Expanding the W3S Brand

“Wes understood that they are pricey and not everyone is going to buy them and they’re not for everyone, so that’s when he decided to come up with a streetwear line so everyone could be part of the W3S community,” said Kiersten.

And as for the future for the W3S brand…

“I want people to see it and sort of think this is not just a brand but a good cause and there’s a meaning behind it,” said Wes.

See For Yourself

You can check out the Moonflag12s at and all of Wes’ streetwear designs at

Stepping up to make a difference.

Naperville News 17’s Casey Krajewski reports.


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