Kamiakin junior makes scarves, blankets to cancer center

Tri-City HeraldMarch 15, 2013 

— Sixteen-year-old Lindsay Przybylski has a simple reason for choosing pink, blue, turquoise and bronze silk to make headscarves for patients at the Tri-Cities Cancer Center.

“When my aunt was going through treatment, that’s what she wanted,” said the Kamiakin High School junior.

Lindsay dropped off 10 scarves and a dozen fleece blankets, all made with her own hands, at the cancer center Friday morning. The center will give them out, along with the hats, wigs and other items they provide free to patients.

The project will satisfy Lindsay’s requirement for a project to graduate from Kamiakin next year. However, becoming closer to her aunt and helping others with cancer was equally important, Lindsay said.

“It’s such a good helpful place,” she said of the cancer center.

Lindsay’s aunt underwent chemotherapy for uterine cancer at the center more than a year ago, and also received radiation therapy. She’s currently in remission, said Lindsay’s mother, Jan Przybylski.

Lindsay said she saw what her aunt went through fighting cancer and was inspired to make the scarves and blankets when one of her teachers suggested she choose a culminating project that had a personal connection.

But first, she had to learn to sew.

“It was hard to keep everything steady (on the sewing machine),” Lindsay said. “The first blanket I did was hard but the more I did, the better I got.”

Lindsay’s aunt taught her everything about using the sewing machine and helping choose fabric. Lindsay said the experience brought them closer.

“I was proud of her and it was good because it’s close to our family,” said her mother, noting her own father also had cancer.

The cancer center’s resource center gives wigs, headscarves and knit hats to people who’ve lost their hair from chemotherapy. Blankets are used by patients who get cold waiting for hours as they receive a chemotherapy treatment.

Connie Warner, the center’s resource coordinator, said the center receives various donations for patients but gifts such as Lindsay’s are particularly heartwarming.

“You’re getting a homemade gift and people really appreciate that,” she said.

As for Lindsay, she said it was great to spend time with her aunt and learn a new skill but it’s one she doesn’t think she’s cut out for.

“I’ll probably stick to buying clothes instead of sewing them,” she said with a laugh.

— Ty Beaver: 509-582-1402; tbeaver@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @_tybeaver

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