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Sheldon Spencer of Kearns lost his daughter to cancer. Now he makes special caps for people who are going through chemotherapy.
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High 5: Kearns Man Puts Time, Money, Effort Into Beanies For Chemo Patients

KEARNS, Utah – Sheldon Spencer has turned heartbreak into comfort for thousands of people in Utah.

As time passes by, the hurt from losing a family member can seem to stand still. For some, though, they take that pain and put it to work.

Sheldon and his wife, Sandra, lost their daughter, 50-year-old Lanette, to cancer.

“It metastasized from breast cancer into her bones and into her brain,” Sandra said.

Knowing how hard it can be to fight that illness — from the pain, to the treatment, to losing your hair — Sheldon took to making beanies.

“Knowing how bare heads from chemotherapy are sensitive, that soft yarn protects the head,” he said. “Our daughter got us started many years ago.”

He said he’s lost count, but Sheldon estimates he’s made and donated close to 8,000 beanies over the years. His hats have gone to places like the American Cancer Society, Humanitarian Center, and the homeless shelter.

“When we delivered some to Huntsman Cancer Center, the lady that received them said she had gone through chemotherapy, and even in the summertime she would put on that soft hat to protect her head from the cold pillow,” Sheldon said.

The process for each beanie is not an easy task.

One wrap around the loom uses about five feet of yarn, and the hat takes more than five hours to complete.

“I admire him greatly,” Sandra said. “He is the strength of our home.”

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