More than 300 people showed up Sunday evening at a west Omaha beauty salon and supply store for fun, food, prizes and touch-ups to nails, hair and eyebrows.
But mostly they were there to support Jenni Edwards, an assistant manager at the shop, whose husband, John Edwards, 35, and brother-in-law, Jason Edwards, 41, were shot and killed Feb. 12. They were trying to help their sister, Julie, 42, move away from Kenneth Clark, 45, who apparently shot the brothers before killing himself.
Chelsi Payson, manager at the Beauty First store near Oak View Mall, said she and her co-workers wanted to do something after the tragedy. People from across Omaha, La Vista and Papillion helped with prizes for a silent auction and a raffle and with professional services at the salon.
“We can’t bring them back,” Payson said of the Edwards brothers, “but at least we can try to help as much as we can.”
Guests wore purple bands around their wrists, and the shop was decorated in purple for domestic violence awareness.
For a $10 admission for adults and $5 for children, guests could have manicures, hair styling, waxing and paraffin dipping. Those not interested in beauty services could mingle, eat, drink, buy baked goods and plants, and participate in the raffle and auction.
Payson declined to say how much money was raised, but said participants were generous. Proceeds will go to Jenni Edwards and her sons, Caleb, Carter and Connor.
Members of the Edwards family attended.
Chris Ford of Papillion said she wanted to support the Edwards family “any way we can bless them.” Her daughter, Alysha Ford, works as a stylist at the salon.
Meghan McLaughlin, an aesthetician at another Beauty First location in Omaha, volunteered as a manicurist. “We are a family at Beauty First, that’s for sure,” she said. “When somebody is in need, we help.”
The admission price was a good deal, McLaughlin said, because manicures alone would cost $25 and eyebrow waxes $16.
Marissa Chaney of Papillion said she attended with her daughter, Kristin, and some friends “just to help out the family, to do what you can.”