Proceeds from the sale of the Hero collection will be donated to nonprofits chosen by Nic Bianchi.

A local businessman — who just finished his junior year of high school — is creating a special product to honor the “heroes” of the coronavirus pandemic.

Nic Bianchi’s Bianchi Candle Co. is selling a limited-edition line of soy candles and will donate 25% of the proceeds to nonprofits that serve healthcare workers, law enforcement, fire departments and the armed forces.

Bianchi, who will be a senior at Papillion-La Vista South High School in the fall, said the idea came about when he and his team were redesigning one of the business’ candle lines and they had the idea for a “hero line” to honor those at the forefront of dealing with COVID-19. They initially thought about having one label to honor all heroes, but ultimately decided to give a specific shout out to each of the groups.

Some of the business’s other candle lines have taken between one and two years to develop, Bianchi said, but they gave themselves two weeks to get the COVID-related hero line ready because the pandemic changes things so quickly.

“We wanted to have it out there so we can start raising money for people who need it,” he said.

Representatives from each of the fields gave input on the labels so they would honor those groups best, even if it means tweaking something so small that 98% of the population wouldn’t notice, Bianchi said.

“We care about that 2% that will notice and care about that,” he said.

The soy candle have “Top notes of bergamot, orange and lemon; and base notes of patchouli and tonka beans,” according to Bianchi Candle’s website.

Bianchi said the candle itself is the easy part, as mixing and matching scents is “the fun part” and the company can manufacture about 1,500 in a 24-hour period. The company’s scent testers range in age from teenagers to 70s, he said.

Each candle is $25 and can be purchased at bianchicandleco.com.

Bianchi started the business in 2014 when he was 12 years old after his parents got him a candle making kit for his birthday.

He previously made a hero edition to raise money for the family of Kerrie Orozco, an Omaha Police officer who died while on duty in 2015. His father, Dave, is a sergeant for the Omaha Police Department.

“It feels good especially since my dad is an officer who is on the front lines,” he said.

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