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St. Charles business donates pillows to Lurie Children's Hospital

Pillow of Health provides hypoallergenic pillows to children with cancer

ST. CHARLES – Pillow of Health was created in 2014 when John Rukel realized there was a need for a better pillow that addressed the core problems of sleep, support, heat and allergens. The pillows are tested on thousands of patients and that knowledge is then used to create a customizable, cool and clean pillow.

“I created the Pillow of Health Kids Pillow because I have small children and knew that all kids deserve healthy sleep,” Rukel said.

Rukel created a Hug One, Give One campaign which helps Pillow of Health provide the healthy pillows to children with compromised immune systems that are being treated at Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. For every Pillow of Health Kids Pillow they sell, they donate one to a child with cancer.

The pillows come in a variety of colors, which help brighten the kids’ hospital rooms, according to Rukel. The parents appreciate the washability of the pillows, which are also moisture wicking, hypoallergenic and antimicrobial. The cover features an ultra-soft, fleece fabric on one side, which is extremely comfortable and soothing against the skin.

Pillow of Health has partnered with Cal’s Angels who helps distribute the pillows at monthly hospital parties.

“Every month we host a hospital party at Lurie Children's Hospital with pizza, toys and crafts for the kids in treatment,” said Stacey Sutter, president and co-founder of Cal’s Angels. “When we were approached by Pillow of Health to discuss a partnership for their Hug One, Give One campaign, we knew it was a perfect match. To date, they have generously donated over 2,000 pillows and we have seen firsthand the joy on the faces of the kids who have received their wonderful pillows.”

Cal’s Angels is a pediatric cancer foundation established in 2007 in memory of Sutter’s oldest son, Cal, who lost his battle with leukemia in 2006 when he was 12 years old, according to its website, Since then, they have been able to bring hope and support to thousands of kids with cancer and their families.

“It’s important to give back to the community and partnering with a local charity has always been a goal of ours,” Rukel said. “We chose Cal’s Angels because we stand behind their values and feel that every child, especially children with cancer, deserve healthy sleep and comfort.”

Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago appreciates the donation of pillows.

“The pillows are becoming a staple here,” said Jessica Merar, CCLS, ParentWISE/special events and donations coordinator for hematology/oncology at Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. “It’s otherwise such a sterile environment. These pillows add color, personalization to each room and the kids even use them as braces when necessary.”

Merar went on to praise Pillows of Health saying the hospital appreciates all they do.

“They put family first; make their lives better, easier and more comfortable," Merar said. "They have been so generous, and their pillows are such a good quality – everyone loves them.”

Pillow of Health has donated 2,000 pillows thus far to Lurie Children’s Hospital and hope to donate at least another 1,000 in 2018. For every pillow purchased at the website, one pillow will be donated to the hospital. For more information, visit

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