Lockport tattoo artist gives back to breast cancer survivors


LOCKPORT, N.Y. (WIVB) — They are covering up their scars and giving them a beautiful reminder that they beat cancer. A tattoo shop in Lockport is the only local shop that’s giving back to breast cancer survivors.

At 43-years-old Brenda Smith received news she thought she’d never hear. Doctors told her she had the earliest form of breast cancer.

“Two years ago I went in for a routine mammogram and they found a lump and I went and had biopsy, it was cancer. It was tough I was like nervous to tell anybody else, because I was like oh, this can’t be it,” said Brenda.

Brenda fought the disease for almost a year and went through radiation and mastectomy surgery, which removed all breast tissue from her breast, until she finally heard the words, cancer free.

A year and a half later, Brenda is lying on a tattoo parlor table, getting a tattoo to cover up a four inch scar that cancer left on her left breast.

“I can see something beautiful instead of seeing something that had a negative impact, so it’s going to be the world,” said Brenda.

“It’s awesome, it’s a great feeling. I’ve covered scars before, but never on a mastectomy,” said Carl Winzenried, owner of Spectrum Ink Studio.

Winzenried is a tattoo artist at his shop in Lockport. He started offering free tattoos to mastectomy patients four months ago and Brenda is the first person to get one.

“I realize not everyone can afford them, especially with all the stuff they’ve been through, that’s an easy way of giving back to them,” said Winzenried.

Brenda’s tattoo would normally cost her at least $200, but for her, the tattoo is free and there’s no cost to hearing “cancer free.”

If you are a survivor of breast cancer and would like to get a free tattoo, Spectrum Ink Studio requires a physician release form.

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