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Long Island mom finds strength after son's death by opening boutique in his memory 

Tova Keblish, the owner of Gavin's Treasures in

Tova Keblish, the owner of Gavin's Treasures in Center Moriches. Credit: Joann Vaglica

Tova Keblish is filling the void in her heart and the space in a 10-year vacant storefront with inspirational and spiritual wares all in the name of her late son, Gavin. The shop, Gavin’s Treasures, opened in May 2019, three years after his death.

"I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t say his name. I wanted to open up something so I would have to say his name," she says. "I opened up a store after him so I could say his name every day."

With a 20-plus year background in corporate positions, Keblish says it's her first foray into retail. Before opening Gavin's, she worked at Marders in Bridgehampton as a planner and buyer, which she says was helpful in learning about her new role as an entrepreneur. "When I say I’m winging it, I’m winging it," she says with a laugh.

The shop sells mostly inspirational and spiritual items (wall art, Buddhas, statues, plaques, crystals, stones, healing bracelets and sage), as well as memorial gifts (stepping-stones, jewelry, candles, urns, picture frames).

Keblish decided to open a boutique with a spiritual focus to help her cope with the death of her son and help others through their own grief.

Gavin was 23 years old when he died unexpectedly from an overdose in 2016, she says. He was a graduate of Albany University who had went on to become a counselor at Little Flower Children and Family Services of New York in Wading River. He is remembered by his mother as "a beautiful soul. Very, very energetic."

Also in his honor at the shop is a wall dedicated to those who lost their lives. People are encouraged to "bring in their angels" for a spot on the shop’s "Loving Angels" board. Hang a picture up on the board then step to the right where you can take a photo against the wall that features hand-painted wings with a sign above that reads, "I got my wings at Gavin’s Treasures."

Throughout the store, customers will find other items, too: holiday, seasonal, home décor (for both indoor and outdoor), aromatherapy, beach and pet pieces. Most items can be customized at this boutique, which doubles as a consignment shop.

Expect to find handmade goods by several local brands here, like candles by Moore's Lights & Lathers; knitted children’s clothing by Designs by Trudi; shelving by Shelf Savvy Co.; and custom pillows and ornaments by Janet Hughes Designs.

Apart from all it offers, Keblish also hosts tarot card readings once a month. Half-hour readings usually occur at the end of each month and cost $65 for a 30-minute appointment.

Customers can create their own swag bags of loose stones and crystals for 50-cents per stone, or they can go for the highest priced item, a $700 amethyst church. It opens daily at 10 a.m. Sundays through Thursdays and closes at 6 p.m. and on Fridays and Saturdays, at 7 p.m. Shop in person at 333 Main St. in Center Moriches; gavinstreasures.com; 631-500-9393.

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