Melissa Schummer couldn’t believe her eyes when she opened her front door. I was standing on her porch with a camera crew as part of WNEM-TV5’s Surprise Squad. I’d been watching McKenna Schummer’s stories about her beauty bar, and I knew I wanted to help.
Eleven-year-old McKenna recently lost her battle to a rare bone cancer called osteosarcoma. She underwent several treatments at the Children’s Hospital of Michigan in Detroit. The treatments caused McKenna to suffer hair loss and her complexion to lose color. It was because of these side effects that she found a love for makeup.
Her mom says she loved wearing makeup and learning about it. She wanted other sick children to experience the same happiness and told her parents she wanted to open a beauty bar inside the hospital. Her mom began working to make her idea a reality.
“We’ve been collecting any kind of makeup for little girls, as well as anything for boys, from gift cards, to monetary donations,” Melissa says.
McKenna never saw the beauty bar come to fruition before she passed away on March 6. McKenna’s family is moving forward with creating the beauty bar and carrying on the little girl’s legacy.
I wanted to use my platform to really help get this project off the ground. I reached out to Younique Cosmetics in Utah to see if the company would be willing to donate to help McKenna’s beauty bar.
“Younique was extremely moved by McKenna’s story, but we were even more moved by her selflessness,” says Priscilla Rountree, public relations manager for Younique. “McKenna Schummer wanted to make a difference in the world, like many of the women involved with Younique. We are honored to be a small part of her story.” Younique surpassed everyone’s expectations and donated more than $10,000 worth of products, including makeup and utensils.
“McKenna Schummer wanted to build self-confidence in girls who are going through unimaginable hardship, and our goal is to ultimately build self-esteem in women around the world,” Rountree says. A representative from the company delivered the products to Schummer’s home with the TV5 Surprise Squad.
“It couldn’t have come at a better time as I was down about it being a month since McKenna’s passing and this donation is just incredible,” Melissa says.
We also surprised Melissa with a bouquet of flowers from Flint’s Floradora and two other moms in “McKenna’s Squad” with a girls’ day in Frankenmuth that included spa treatments at Serendipity and dinner and overnight accommodations at the Bavarian Inn Lodge.
McKenna’s Beauty Bar will open at the Children’s Hospital on June 22. The Surprise Squad segment with the donation can be seen on WNEM.com.