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'She fits right in': Roberts woman offers free haircuts to Hysham community

Small Montana town is without a barbershop
Shawna Wombolt
Posted at 9:30 AM, May 05, 2023

HYSHAM - When Shawna Wombolt last visited her father in Hysham, she noticed that the small community didn't have its own barbershop.

Well, actually, she had known that for a while. In fact, part of the reason she was there was to cut her 84-year-old father's hair, something she has done for almost 40 years.

But this time she had a realization. If there isn't a barbershop for 27 miles, how does the rest of the town get a haircut?

Hysham

"I just thought about it and was like, that is a long ways to go, especially for people who might be elderly, struggling to leave the house like my dad," Wombolt said.

That's when Wombolt came up with the idea to offer free haircuts to all of Hysham, posting to the community Facebook page to see if there were any takers.

"I'd noticed for a few years that it's been a need here, so I was like, 'Why not?'" Wombolt said. “It was just a thought of maybe I can do something for someone if they need it, and that was it."

Facebook Post

The Facebook post blew up with comments and likes, with many complimenting her selflessness.

"I was completely shocked," Wombolt said. "Multiple people commented saying, 'This is so kind. This is so nice.' It's just crazy because I didn't think much of it. I just saw it is a way I can help out and I like to do that."

One of those takers was Hysham hardware store owner David Rickett.

“Living in a small town and especially since COVID, you can’t just run to town and expect to get a haircut," Rickett said. "And as a busy businessman, I can’t make an appointment because I can’t keep it."

Rickett said the added convenience of a haircut in town was life-changing.

“It’s huge here because it’s a minimum 20 miles to go for a haircut and some of these people can’t get out of the house,” Rickett said.

Wombolt Hair Cut

And while Wombolt actually lives in Roberts, Rickett said her free service falls right in line with Hysham's small-town culture.

“Hysham is one of those unique small towns," Rickett said. "I mean everybody helps everybody and it’s cool to live here. She fits right in."

For Wombolt, the decision to help was a no-brainer. She said any small gesture can make a difference. Even something as simple as a haircut.

“There’s a lot of bad in the world these days, but there’s a lot of good, and there's a lot of good people, too," Wombolt said. "And that’s what I think you need to focus on. If I can be any help at all to somebody or any help at all, it makes me happy."