Kids Being Tough! James Hampton, Hayden Wempen and Dillon Fabricius are selling breast cancer awareness items again this year to benefit the Fremont County Cancer Fund. (Ernie Over photo)
(Riverton, Wyo.) – Dillon Fabricius, Hayden Wempen and James Hampton are friends and students together at Riverton Middle School. Five years ago Hayden’s mom Michelle died of breast cancer. His buddy Dillon wanted to do something to memorialize his friend’s mom last year, and came up with an idea to sell breast cancer awareness tee shirts.
“He took $800 out of his savings to buy the initial order of shirts and the trio began to sell them at school,” his mom Kay reported. Pretty soon the boys took them to any event they could think of, including the Riverton Rendezvous Day in the Park, the Farmer’s Markets, the county fair and went on the radio to promote their project. “We would sell them to anyone who wanted them,” Dillon said. When the county fair’s Tough Enough to Wear Pink rodeo night event came around, the boys presented the local cancer fund with a check for $4,000 in memory of Hayden’s mom.
Flush with success the boys are doing it again this year, but they’ve been joined by Treyton Paxton who’s mom died this past year, also of cancer.
“People say it is really good what you kids are doing,” Hampton said. “Some people gave us donations instead of buying a shirt.”
Like any true entrepreneurs, the boys have increased the kinds of items they are selling this year to include sweatshirts and wide bracelets emblazoned with “Kids being Tough.” They have also made the shirts brighter pink and are offering the sweatshirts in several different colors (white, gray, pink and lime green). The front of the tees and sweatshirts feature a large red ribbon bordered in barb wire and on the back are the words “Kids Being Tough.” Dillon said the design was done by his aunt.
“The students at school think this is way cool,” Wempen said.
The first week of sales this year already netted $750 in sales. “We’ll be selling to the eighth grade tomorrow and Friday, and then to the sixth grade next week,” Wempen said. Look for the boys at upcoming holiday craft fairs too and other public events. The hours for the sale at RMS are before and after school, from 7 to 7:30 a.m. and from 3 to 3:25 p.m.
Tee shirts are available in both youth sizes ($15) and adult sizes ($20) or two for $35. The bracelets are $5 each and the sweatshirts are $35 each. The boys will also accept donations, and special orders for sweatshirts will be taken until December 13th. Orders can also be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.