For most, the hair on your head gives you personality. But when battling cancer, it can all be taken away.
One Williston man and his siblings are working together to help those affected with hair loss, all in honor of their mom.
“She was very selfless,” said Anna Christensen.
“Like, she’d treat every little kid like they were just like little angels,” said Josh Imes.
“She always just had something to help them because she loved kids,” said Becca Imes.
All three siblings, sharing memories of their late mom, Patti Imes, who was diagnosed in 2003 with stage 4 breast cancer.
“She honestly had it for probably at least a year, a year and a half, before she actually went to the doctor,” Josh said.
After many years of fighting, Patti died in 2013.
“It was hard, I remember spending a lot of time in the shower so that I could cry without no one knowing,” Josh said.
But instead of bottling all of those emotions up, Josh and his siblings did what their mom had always done — give.
Following her death, the three began donating their hair to various organizations to create wigs for those who lost their hair to cancer treatments.
“Anna and I got to talking and I asked, ‘Where do we give our donations to?’ Like, ‘Where do they go once we give it to those companies?'” Becca said.
She says after doing research, she found that the places they’d donate to were charging people in need for a wig.
So, they decided to take things into their own hands to supply wigs for free.
“We have enough now for at least seven wigs but we don’t have the money out of our own pockets to just go make seven wigs at a time at a thousand bucks a pop,” Anna said.
To help leverage costs, in honor of their mom, they created a non-profit called “This One’s For Patty” in October, and although the organization is new, one hair salon owner has already pitched in to help by discounting haircuts for customers who offer to donate their hair.
“I’ve always been the person that if I can give something of myself I would love to and this is something that is really simple for me,” Hot Headz Salon Owner, Ashley Korner said.
As for the three siblings, and one who wasn’t interviewed, well, their sights are set high.
“We’re going to give so many people wigs and get them made and we’re going to change the world,” Becca said.
“I hope that she’s just pleased with the work that we are doing,” Anna said.
The three say last week they held the organization’s first fundraiser and raised enough money to make their first-ever wig.
They say it takes up to seven hair donations to make one wig.
They’ve also started an annual 5K last year, held on St. Patrick’s Day, that they hope to use as a fund generator moving forward as well.
To register for this year’s 5K held in March, click here.