BATESVILLE – There are no better words to describe Ramona Mitchell’s mission than Crocheting for Comfort.
The retired school teacher has taken crocheting for others to heart. She takes the afghans she has crocheted and donates them to either Unity Hospice or Hospice South for their terminally ill clients.
She has also donated 45 afghans for the Veterans Hospital in Oxford, where her uncle is a resident. Tri-Lakes Senior Care has also approached Mitchell for afghans.
She has even received a letter from the wife of a hospice patient who passed on. "The letter was addressed to the lapthrow Lady, according to Mitchell.
"She wrote that her husband got real cold and she said that was a help to him right before he died," Mitchell said. "I just treasure that letter. I appreciated it." Mitchell has been crocheting for 50 years, since she was a teen-ager. She has been crocheting the afghans for the patients a little over a year.
"I just thoroughly enjoy it," Mitchell said. "I used to do it when I was a teen-ager and mother used to tell me ‘young people don’t do that – that’s for when you get older.’ But I enjoy it. I have always enjoyed any crafts. I figured I need to concentrate on one, so I figured crocheting is my talent, since I can’t sing or paint.
"I figure God gave me that talent for a reason and now I am putting it to use," she added.
Crocheting for Hospice patients came as a result of personal experience. Ramona is married to James Mitchell.
His parents were patients of Hospice South in Clarksdale.
"They were so helpful to the family, very much so. I asked one of the ladies associated with it at the time if they could use afghans. She said ‘yes’ so that’s when I started," Ramona said.
Making of one afghan takes 12-to-15 hours. Not only does making afghans take time but it takes a lot of yarn. Mitchell started thinking about what she would do after retirement about three years before her actual retirement
"I started buying yarn because I knew I would not have as much money," she said. "We moved over here in ’94 and I realized I had tons of yarn in the attic and it was not doing anyone any good.
"Plus my best friend from Clarksdale decided she did not want to crochet any more and so she gave me all of her yarn which filled up the trunk of her car plus another trip. Added to my stash I got to thinking about what I could do," Mitchell added.