Despite growing up on different sides of the city, Cheryl Lee, Lynn Pierce and Caroline Pursey have been friends for nearly 45 years. The secret of their divine sisterhood: Their fathers were friends first.
Lee and Pierce are biological sisters, but the close friendship between their father and Pursey’s father brought their families together. It is a connection cemented not only by the memories of childhood sleepovers and family camping trips, but also the support Pursey needed after a phone call five years ago confirming that the lump under her arm was Stage 2 breast cancer.
“You go through hell and back when you’re in radiation,” says Pursey. “But once I was out, I felt rejuvenated. My whole way of thinking about life completely changed.”
By the end of 2003, Pursey was in remission. For her celebratory Christmas party, Lee created inspirational angel cards as a gift to her.“I fell in love with them; they are just so whimsical and beautiful,” recalls Pursey. Adding a discrete pink ribbon to each design and donating 10 percent of each sale to breast cancer research, the women decided to mass-produce the cards. The result was Cards for a Cure by Cheryl Lee Design, a collection featuring angels named after the emotions they’re designed to evoke: serenity, joy and love.
Pierce handles the business side, Pursey oversees sales and marketing, and Lee creates the art. “We all have our moments,” Lee says, when asked about the challenges of starting a business with friends. But “because the love is there, we always bring that back to the table versus getting lost in the nitty-gritty.”
Cards for a Cure by Cheryl Lee can be purchased at Local Girl Gallery in Lakewood or at cherylleedesign.com.