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Judy Freeark Oncology Quilt Legacy Continues

Individuals undergoing care at the San Luis Valley Health’s Oncology/Infusion Center will receive a warm welcome package when they arrive for treatment, thanks to the vision of one of their own. Judy Freeark, a master fiber artist and quilter, began her own journey with cancer three years ago. It was at the San Luis Valley Health’s Oncology/Infusion Center that Judy appreciated firsthand the comfort provided by the warmth of a quilt while undergoing chemotherapy.

As a member of the San Luis Valley Quilt Guild, Judy rallied her colleagues in the guild to construct quilts suitable to cover a person lying in a recliner. Lynn Weathers, the owner of the Alamosa Quilt Company, designed a tote bag pattern to accommodate a quilt, water bottle, reading material, and mobile devices taken to and from the infusion center. Over the past three years, 225 individuals undergoing treatment at the San Luis Valley Health’s Oncology/Infusion Center have received a specially made quilt and tote bag to keep. These are small gifts meant to give warmth and comfort to recipients.

Judy readily shared her quilting talents with others by teaching techniques, pattern construction, and use of color and design. Also, as a medical lab technician who worked for years at the St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe and the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center in Missouri, she was adamant that others be educated on the prevention, screening, and treatment of cancer. She spoke openly and honestly about the challenges, obstacles, and silver lining involved in the experience of cancer.

Judy and her husband, Wayne, retired to the San Luis Valley in 1994.  Judy died at home under the care of her family and hospice on September 22.  The San Luis Valley Quilt Guild will continue Judy’s legacy of providing a quilt and tote bag ensemble for each person undergoing treatment at the San Luis Valley Health’s Oncology/Infusion Center.  For more information on the Judy Freeark Oncology Quilt Legacy, contact the Alamosa Quilt Company at (719) 937-2555.