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Cookeville business provides free wigs for cancer patients

Knoxville WVLT-TV logo Knoxville WVLT-TV 2/18/2020
a close up of a newspaper: Suzi Q's Scrubs & a Whole Lot More in Cookeville provides free wigs for cancer patients. / Source: (WTVF) © Provided by Knoxville WVLT-TV Suzi Q's Scrubs & a Whole Lot More in Cookeville provides free wigs for cancer patients. / Source: (WTVF)

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT/WTVF) -- A Cookeville business recently partnered with the American Cancer Society to provide free wigs for cancer patients.

According to WTVF, Suzi Q's Scrubs & a Whole Lot More sits right across the street from Cookeville Regional Medical Center. Just as the name lends, there's more inside the store than meets the eye.

"When they walked through the doors, I wanted them to feel like they were in a salon and we were going to treat them like a queen," Suzi Q's owner Susie Dobbs said.

Dobbs is also a radiation therapist who jumped on the opportunity to become the area's free wig salon last October. According to Dobbs, a quality wig can run as much as $1,000.

"Getting just the diagnosis of cancer is stressful enough, but then them telling you that you're going to be losing your hair is even more stressful," breast cancer patient Karen Harris said.

Harris was diagnosed with breast cancer in September and heard about Suzi Q's free wig program. Working with the store manager, Regina Groce, a breast cancer survivor herself, made a tough experience that much easier.

"We tried on wigs to see what looked good and see what didn’t," Harris said. "It was really, really nice to have all of that attention and be helped as much as they did."

Because of Harris, Suzi Q's is now partnered with her work, Mister Wayne’s Beauty and Barber School. Now, anyone who gets a free wig can also get it cut and styled at no cost.

"In a way, I knew it was important, but in a way, I didn’t realize how much of a significant difference it was going to make for these women," Dobbs said.

So far, Suzi Q's has provided 30 wigs for patients, but Dobbs wants to take it one step further. She's working to launch I Am Beautiful to teach cancer patients how to do make-up and dress for their changing bodies.

"We want to remind them that that beauty is still in there and we’re going to find it because you’re beautiful no matter what," Dobbs said. "Whether you have hair, whether don’t have hair, whether you don’t exactly look like you did before, you’re beautiful."

The program will initially be geared towards cancer patients, but eventually, Dobbs would like to expand it to include abuse survivors and women battling depression. She wants the program to provide a community of women to support each other.

Copyright 2020 WVLT via WTVF. All rights reserved.

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