‘Magic Yarn’ wigs free cancer kids from fear

Jul 5, 2018, 10:30 PM | Updated: Jul 6, 2018, 11:26 am

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Kids with cancer endure endless treatments and hospital stays. But one woman has found a way to give them freedom from fear.

This former oncology nurse traveled 3,000 miles to make something for some special kids: 2-year-old Indy, 5-year-old Hazel, and Nixon, who’s 6. BYU nursing alum Holly Christensen lives in Anchorage, Alaska, where the Magic Yarn Project was born.

Christensen made a Rapunzel wig to help a friend’s daughter through cancer. It was such a hit, she asked for donations on Facebook to make more.

“It just kind of snowballed from there,” she said.

Holly Christensen, center, and her team complete Magic Yarn wigs for cancer patients around the world.

Now, a tangle of volunteers from all over the country, make whimsical wigs for little girls and boys with cancer.

“Anna, Ariel, Elsa, Belle, Cinderella, Rapunzel. It just invites them back into the world of imagination and play and allows them to be children again.”

It also helps them find their creativity, and frees them from fear, she said.

The work knits people together.

“We’ve gone onto our air force base in Alaska and soldiers have made Elsa wigs during a workshop. We’ve involved inner-city youth in Queens, New York,” Christensen said.

Also, women doing time in Alaska have participated.

Cancer patient Hazel crowfoot, age 5, said she wishes she could “fly away on a magic carpet,” just like the Disney character her Magic Yarn wig depicts.

“My job is to take that yarn and wrap it around these peg boards,” Connor Munden, an Eagle Scout candidate from Highland, Utah said.

“Some are more difficult than others. Some fray, some are just knotted from the inside. I wanted to do something for them that could help them feel pretty.”

The yarn then gets delivered to a workshop at BYU where hundreds of strangers help kids they’ll never meet.

“It’s always nice for them to be like, normal, in a way. And this is just one way that they can be more like just any other kid,” said Nicolette Fenton, a volunteer.

For Christensen, letters of gratitude are the binding.

At Primary Children’s Hospital, 2-year-old Indy Jones gets her Magic Yarn wig to help her have courage to fight cancer.

One letter from a father in Belgium said, “Since Marie has received her Elsa wig, she has been suffering, dot, dot, dot, dot, from fits of giggles and laughter, and she has been breaking out, dot, dot, dot, dot, in Frozen serenades all day long.”

Though she can’t cure cancer, Christensen says she can do something. The hundreds of wigs volunteers made were delivered to Primary Children’s Hospital, ready to go to the little patients who need them most.

As Indy picked her Rapunzel wig, Nixon decided to hit the high seas with his Capt. Jack Sparrow wig.

“He can go out and pretend to be somebody else and not have to worry about cancer, and just be fun like a normal kid,” said Janessa Whatcott, Nixon’s mother.

For Hazel, it’s one thing to FEEL like a princess. Quite another to actually see it on the camera in her mother’s iPhone.

“Ahhhhh!” Hazel said.

Veronica Crowfoot, Hazel’s mom said, “She doesn’t have many choices right now. A lot has been taken away from her.”

Hazel said, “I wish what I could do is fly away for real.”

“She has choices with them. Whether she wants to be bald and fabulous and beautiful, or if she wants to be Jasmine,” Crowfoot said.

With the help of her Rapunzel wig, Indy is becoming long on courage.

So are thousands of kids with cancer, in 39 countries, on every continent, thanks to thousands of volunteers across the U.S.

All because of a mom in Alaska with an idea.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Latest News

President Joe Biden speaks during a press conference in the State Dinning Room at the White House o...
JOSH BOAK and COLLEEN LONG Associated Press

Biden signs $1T infrastructure deal into law with bipartisan crowd celebrating

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden signed his hard-fought $1 trillion infrastructure deal into law Monday before a bipartisan, celebratory crowd on the White House lawn, declaring that the new infusion of cash for roads, bridges, ports and more is going to make life “change for the better” for the American people. But prospects are […]
8 months ago
Mike Anderson, KSL TV

Fire chief concerned about safety along stretch of I-84

The Mountain Green fire chief is calling for safety improvements along what he believes is an extremely dangerous stretch of I-84. He says his department deals with frequent crashes there.
8 months ago
Medical staff attend to COVID-positive patients in the ICU ward at the Holy Family hospital on May ...
Ladd Egan, KSL TV

‘We’re in a crisis’: Utah’s ICU beds above functionally full level

The Utah Hospital Association said the state’s health care system is once again in a crisis situation as intensive care units fill up with sick COVID-19 patients.
10 months ago
Garna Mejia, KSL TV

Gov. Cox reaffirms Utah’s commitment to Afghan refugees

With a humanitarian crisis unraveling in Afghanistan, many Utahns are stepping up to help. Today Governor Spencer Cox reaffirmed his commitment to resettle refugees.
11 months ago
Jed Boal, KSL TV

‘I have really significant concerns’: Doctors worry as school starts, delta variant surges

As the number of new Covid cases in Utah, and across the country continues to surge, medical researchers at University of Utah Health warn that the situation will continue to get worse. That’s what they see in today’s numbers.
11 months ago
(KSL TV)...
Tania Dean, KSL TV

Neighborhood Puts On Safe Fireworks Show

In one Saratoga Springs neighborhood, about 40 families pooled their money and came together to safely celebrate the 4th of July with personal fireworks.
1 year ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
‘Magic Yarn’ wigs free cancer kids from fear