Paper: The Kansas City Star
Author: KAREN UHLENHUTH
Date: December 2, 1996
Section: FYI Page: E1
Copyright 1996, The Kansas City Star Co.
Message: Losing hair, gaining a friend Cancer patients find confidence in local wig creator Patty Turkal
Losing hair, gaining a friend
All too often, the sequence of events goes like this: the diagnosis, the surgery, the chemotherapy, the Zsa Zsa Gabor wig. Patty Turkal knows just how bad a bad wig can be - especially for someone trying to come back from cancer. In her little Overland Park shop, discreetly named Brian Joseph's (after her grandson) and discreetly located in a single-story commercial building on a quiet side street, Turkal helps cancer patients keep their dignity, their looks and their hope after they've lost their hair.
She sells a line of wigs - medical hair prostheses, she calls them - that she developed specifically for bald people. Their linings don't scratch. They fit more securely than many, thanks to several strategically-placed adhesive patches. And they don't make the wearers look anything like Zsa Zsa - unless they want to, that is.
Also for sale are breast prostheses, eyelashes and a shampoo created specially for bald cancer patients by Turkal and a chemist who was afflicted with brain cancer.
Every bit as important as what she sells, however, is what Turkal has to say to her clients, many of whom are still reeling from the bad news delivered perhaps just days before their first meeting with her.
"When you're there saying, 'I'm going to get well,' she's there saying, 'Of course you are,' '' said Jane Mobley, a businesswoman from Fairway who was diagnosed and treated last spring for ovarian cancer.
Turkal knows. A decade after she had perfected her chemotherapy wig, she had need of it herself.
A quick video for wigs for kids.
4707 College Blvd.
Leawood, KS 66211
Serving Overland Park, Kansas and Kansas City Metro areas