First came the breast cancer diagnosis. Then came the loss of her beloved mother. And now, Heather Quigley is taking an opportunity to give back to those who provided the utmost care for her.
In recognition of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Quigley will be donating her handcrafted bath bombs, body butters and sugar scrubs to Othello Community Hospital and the Kadlec Medical Center in Tri-Cities, whose staff became like a second family during her mother’s treatments.
“It all started there (Othello Community Hospital),” Quigley said. “Our hospital is small, but they were amazing with her.”
It was in October of 2002 when Heather’s mother, Julene Fleishman, first received the news. She battled the breast cancer hard, but eventually the cancer spread throughout other parts of her body. Then in 2012, she was informed that she might only survive another six months.
Against the odds, however, Fleishman exceeded her six-month expectancy, and fought hard for four more years before her passing in June of 2016.
“She inspired a lot of people,” said Quigley.
Prior to her diagnosis, Fleishman worked for Dr. Randel Bunch for 37 years, and was well known in the community. She was devoted to her family, and even during her toughest times battling the cancer, she continued to participate in family functions, especially if it involved her grandchildren.
“She would do anything for anybody,” Quigley said. “She never complained.”
Fleishman was in and out of the hospital quite often, Quigley recalled, and found much comfort in taking baths while undergoing treatments.
It was this idea that inspired Quigley to provide her handcrafted body essentials in hopes that others going through treatments, as well as those caring for patients and loved ones, may have something of comfort and care to enjoy.
Quigley, who has worked in the Othello School District for 20 years, first began making bath bombs this past April, as a way to cope with the grief she felt following her mother’s passing.
“I feel like it saved me,” she said. “It really saved me, that’s why it’s so special.”
Quigley, with the help of her family, also has a business called Udabomb Bath Bombs and More, offering all-natural products that can be found on both Facebook and Instagram.
The process of making all of the items sold, Heather explained, would not be possible without the help of her husband Mark, son and two daughters who all help out.
“It’s just something that helps with the grief,” she said.
In total, Quigley plans to donate about 150 items. Each of the items are made with carefully selected oils that she researched to ensure would be best for cancer patients.
“It’s an easy way to give back,” she said.
During the month of October, the Othello Community Hospital offers free/reduced mammograms in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Quigley hopes to encourage others to get checked regularly so that they may have a fighting chance also.