After a 30- year career in advertising, Pattie Cagney Sheehan decided to take a different path in life: she founded a business that provides post- surgery support to people who’ve had breast cancer.
Cancer had already visited Sheehan’s life and irrevocably changed it. Sheehan’s father died from pancreatic cancer in his 50s and her mother passed away from ovarian cancer in her 80s. As her mother underwent chemotherapy and wanted to purchase a wig, Sheehan decided there were not enough resources to help her and others.
“I’d watched her struggle to maintain her dignity, never losing her sense of self or her sense of humor, and all the while reaching out to others as they joined the club (of those diagnosed),” Sheehan says. “When she died in June 2007 I realized what I needed to do for my second act.”
Sheehan’s next step was to found a Chicago boutique — appropriately dubbed Second Act — that provides mastectomy products and wigs.