On Sept. 11, people all over the county were taking a moment to remember lives lost. At in Vista, some marked the day by giving back in honor of cancer victims.
“This is definitely our way of trying to make a difference,” said Jenni Kemp, stylist at Envision. “We’re remembering a friend and trying to help so many others suffering from this horrible disease.”
Kemp helped organize a Cut-A-Thon in honor of her late co-worker, Kelley Casey, who was a manicurist at the salon.
“She died a year ago at age 54 from lung cancer. Our friendship was really unique in that it developed after she became ill. I was truly honored to help her through her last stages of life.”
The Cut-A-Thon raised more than $1600. Those who attended paid $20 for a haircut and entry into raffles. Prizes ranged from personal training to full service spa give-aways. Free cancer screenings were also provided by Dr. Edward McClay, a renowned melanoma oncologist. Proceeds from the event benefited North County Cancer Fitness, a nonprofit operating out of the Tri-City Wellness Center.
“The money donated will provide memberships for cancer patients who cannot afford to pay,” said Susan Webster, founder of North County Cancer Fitness, and a breast cancer survivor. “We have five clients right now who are receiving scholarships and we’re giving them modified exercises and nutritional information that will help them while they are battling their disease.”
“Susan and the gym saved me,” said Kee MacFarlane, a lung cancer patient attending the event. “In May I fell down a flight of stairs and broke eight bones. Through x-rays, doctors discovered I had stage 1 lung cancer. I was lost until I got connected with the wonderful people at the Wellness Center. The gym is truly amazing and I have become so much stronger.”
Kemp says she is thrilled the event was such a success and knows her friend Kelly would have been proud.
“Some of Kelly’s clients came. Many of them didn’t even know she was sick. This was a way to honor her and help others.”