$400K donated to hospital from Hawkeye 'Wave' shirt sales

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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- People have bought 22,000 shirts in honor of the wave at Hawkeye football games.

Today, the University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital benefited from the profits of those sales. What started as a small and simple idea turned into nearly half a million dollars.

"Things just kind of come together," said Lori Willis, one of the shirt's designers.

"We are overjoyed. I think it's an understatement about today. I think it's the culmination of all of our hard work and all of the efforts of Iowans in general," said Brooke Mickelson, one of the shirt's designers.

Brooke Mickelson and two other families designed the Iowa Wave Shirt in October. They hoped to sell a couple hundred, but it led to 22 thousand sales at HyVee and Von Maur stores statewide. All of the profits are going to the hospital's Child Life services, pediatric research, and the Adolescent and Young Adult cancer program.

"You know it may be scary and frustrating and sometimes painful to be here but when you see an entire community come around, it does a lot to help them I think," said Dr. Bill Terry, the medical director of the Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Program with the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Mickelson said they want patients to know they're not alone.

"We want you to feel hope. We want you to feel joy. We want instead for you to feel loved and supported across the state of Iowa," said Mickelson.

They are already talking about a new shirt for next season.

"The positive feedback and knowing that there is just as much energy going into next season for this and so this check today is just kind of a foretaste in my heart of where this is actually going to go," said Willis.

"We're going to keep fighting for them. We're going to keep fundraising. We're super excited to see where this takes off because we're just so thankful from where it started and where it is today," said Mickelson.

It's all part of a never ending wave of support. The wave shirt's production has stopped so stores will run out soon. The Von Maur in Coralville said they only have about 40 left.

Read the original version of this article at www.kcrg.com.