While October may be National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, across our Lakeland Division’s central region “Pink Thursday” supporters are raising awareness every week.
Over the years, Regional Director Patrick Helm has sported a pink shirt or tie every Thursday in October to support Breast Cancer Awareness. It didn’t take long for the pink to become a staple in his attire.
“As I reflected on my family, friends, neighbors and fellow associates who battled with some type of cancer, I felt like one month wasn’t enough,” Patrick explained. “So, I began wearing pink every Thursday.”
One Thursday — when he was a district manager — Patrick was approached by a customer leaving one of his stores. The elderly gentleman wanted him to know his pink tie looked sharp. So, Patrick jumped at the opportunity to share why he wore pink every Thursday.
“The customer teared up as he told me how much he appreciated me thinking of people like him, because he was a cancer survivor,” said Patrick.
Patrick shared this encounter with his wife who also decided to participate in “Pink Thursdays.” When store management teams would comment or ask about his tie or shirt, Patrick always explained it was his way of raising awareness. And before he knew it, several associates in districts 3 and 17 joined in.
In 2017, Patrick was promoted to regional director and continued to share his story. Several store managers, department managers, assistant department managers and team leaders picked up on Patrick’s passion behind pink across the region. If you travel across the central region of our Lakeland Division, you’ll find yourself greeted by pink shirts, all silently raising awareness for those whose lives have been touched by cancer.