ARLINGTON — For eight years after their 26-year-old son Cameron passed away from cancer, Magic Shears co-owners Randy and Debbie Howell donated items to the oncology department of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center of Seattle, but as they planned their collection drive last year, the Arlington couple decided to focus on the needs of those a bit closer to home.
So, for the second year in a row, Magic Shears' collection box will be taking in books, games, blankets and other items to comfort the patients at Cascade Valley Hospital's oncology department.
"We know how tough it is to spend time in a hospital with nothing to do," Debbie Howell said. "This community helped us out through our son's illness, so we'd like to return the favor."
Magic Shears has already taken in a few Teddy bears and children's books for younger patients, but they'd also like to receive some pens and paper, puzzles and other games for adults.
"Lap blankets help keep the patients warm, since they get cold very easily when they're undergoing treatment," Howell said. "Freshly knitted hats and scarves will not only also keep them warm, but help prevent them from catching germs from used clothing items."
The Howells plan on dropping their collections off to Cascade Valley Hospital around Christmastime, in memory of their son.
"They're in our backyard and they need it," Howell said. "Arlington is our bread and butter, and it's supported us throughout the years."
Magic Shears is located at 306 N. Olympic Ave. in Arlington. For more information, call 360-435-3833.