By Lisa Hughes

WORCESTER (CBS) – A snow angel has been busy outside UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester, with an important message for the patients there, the word “hope.” While we all can use a little hope, it’s especially important for people undergoing cancer treatment.

Some people look at an area covered with snow and see a problem to be removed. Others see a canvas. “I really just walked in the snow,” says Tina Leger.

“Hope” written in snow outside UMass Memorial Medical Center (WBZ-TV)

But she did a lot more than that. “I started out by doing the butterfly,” she says, referring to the image of a butterfly she stamped out in a field of snow using her feet and her eye.

The butterfly was inspired by her girlfriend who is an oncology nurse at UMass Memorial. When that got a big reaction, she continued tromping through the snow, creating a heart and the word ‘hope’ aimed primarily at cancer patients.

Tina Leger (WBZ-TV)

“A small gesture meant to just make a couple of people smile as they walked by,” she says. And it worked.

“It filled my heart when someone told me yesterday that a woman was crying and taking pictures of it. My legs went weak actually. I thought, geez, it does not take much,” she says.

Patients and staff are embracing the message and the artwork. “Like everyone, you’re looking for hope,” says one patient.

Tina Leger makes a heart in the snow (WBZ-TV)

“My reaction was, how cool that is and that somebody took the time to do that. And it matters,” says a family member of a patient.

“Just a little gesture like that is making them feel like they’re going to be ok. And that there are people who care about them here,” says Melissa Pepin who works in the hospital’s mammography department.

Of course the temperature is rising. Snow is fleeting, but it doesn’t matter. “Hope is not fleeting. You just need to see it, feel it, keep it inside of you forever,” Tina says.

Lisa Hughes