Linda Bartley has gathered quite a collection of vibrant hats and scarves, as well as beautiful wigs. Collections often give us a glimpse of what is important to the collector, but when you see Linda’s collection, it also tells a story.

Linda Bartley has gathered quite a collection of vibrant hats and scarves, as well as beautiful wigs. Collections often give us a glimpse of what is important to the collector, but when you see Linda’s collection, it also tells a story.


You would have seen her at thrift stores and estate sales buying these bright and colorful items. It all began after she was told she had cancer and started losing her hair from the chemo treatments.


"At one estate sale, a lady, who was also a cancer survivor, gave me a wig, and it meant a lot to me," said Linda. "I had fun collecting the hats and wigs,"


Linda’s favorite hat is a little burgundy one with flowers on the brim.


"I like hats and I like flowers," said Linda.


Entering Linda’s room, one can see that her love for vivid colors spills over into her decorations as well. Two walls are painted a relaxing lilac and the others are painted a soft blue. The walls are filled with gorgeous paintings and she has many charming trinkets.


"She has decorated her room with bright colors and inspirational things," said one of Linda’s daughters, Tammy Preston who came all the way from Montana to take care of her "Momma." She also shared many fun moments with her mom shopping and searching for those hats and scarves.


"I have a total of 21 children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren," said Linda. "My family has been very supportive. When I was in the hospital, they were there every day, and I’m talking 30 people! I am very blessed by the family I have."


Home Hospice has made it possible for Linda to stay at home with her family as her illness progresses.


"It’s a strange deal when you know your time is coming to an end; I believe Jesus picked me up and carried me through," said Linda. "He has given me this time to spend with my family and to say goodbye. It’s been real hard for me. I can’t do a lot, but I can love my family."


The most impressive thing about Linda is her desire to continue spreading kindness to others even through she is walking through a difficult road. She has so many stories of how others have shown compassion to her and she wants to pass on that kindness.


Several thrift stores gave her decorative flowers for free when they learned that she was going through health concerns and wanted to decorate her room with an inspirational atmosphere. A man at the Salvation Army gave her a walker that was in amazing shape for free.


"There are good Samaritans everywhere!" said Tammy.


Linda has now donated her collection of hats, scarves, and wigs to be help others who are going through cancer like she has.


Some of the hats have been kept at Home Hospice for patients in need of a hat or a wig. Most of Linda’s collection has been given to the Room For Hope, a part of the Texoma Health Foundation. Maria Hayes started the Room for Hope when she was in high school. Her goal was to create a place where women battling cancer could find things of comfort along with other items such as hats and wigs.


"Texoma Health Foundation works with over 200 women a year," said Hayes. "I just wanted to do something that was going to help a lot of people in my area and I especially wanted to do something for the women."


Linda shares that same desire to help.


"I wanted to share the hats because cancer is a difficult thing to go through and a pretty wig or wonderful hat helps," said Linda. "Something bright always helps."


"Momma is continuing the kindness by donating these hats," said her daughter Tammy. Turning to her mother and holding her hand she said, "That’s how you’ve always been Momma, you know how to pass it along and make a friend with any stranger."


To find out more about Home Hospice or to read more inspiring stories visit www.homehospice.org. To learn more about The Room For Hope visit http://texomahealth.org/.


Home Hospice is a non-profit organization, founded in 1982, dedicated to providing education, programs, services and quality care to palliate physical, emotional and spiritual symptoms at end-of-life for patients, families, and caregivers regardless of ability to pay, as well as all in our communities who grieve.