By Gary Budzak
Nearly three dozen people will voluntarily go bald to raise money for childhood cancer research at 2 p.m. July 12 on the patio of Son of Thurman.
Joanie Colflesh Daly, who will get her own shoulder-length red hair shaved off, decided to make the sacrifice as a show of solidarity for a brave boy.
“What got me interested in doing this was a little boy named Jacob Barnett in my daughter’s playgroup, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at the end of his first week of kindergarten,” Daly said. “When he lost his hair because of chemotherapy, I decided instead of just shaving my head, I would have a whole local event to have as many people as I could to shave their heads to show support to all those families in Delaware who have gone through this.”
As of last week, Daly said she had 34 people willing to “Brave the Shave!” (at least 3 of them female), 13 teams (including Delaware Fire and Police and County EMS), 5 barbers and 13 volunteers. Together, they have raised over $12,225 through The St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the country’s largest non-governmental childhood cancer research funding charity.
“I have been working on this since January,” Daly said. “When I first started my goal was to have 20 people shave their heads. My favorite part is when people I don’t even know are signing up.”
In addition, Jacob’s family will attend, as well as other St. Baldrick’s Honored Kids.
There will be a platform on the patio so everyone can see the head-shaving. Daly said Son of Thurman proprietor Chris DeVol agreed to have the restaurant host the event, donated $500 and started his own team.
“He said, ‘I love kids. I hate cancer. Let’s do it,’” Daly said was DeVol’s response.
Daly, who lives in Delaware County, said she’s never had her head shaved before.
“I have been to St. Baldrick’s events before, and never in my life thought I would do that,” she said. “I’ve seen women had their head shaved for $500, and I thought if I ever do it, it would have to be for a lot of money.”
She said she doesn’t plan to buy a wig once her head is shaved, but may wear a hat to an upcoming wedding.
To sign up or for more information, visit http://www.stbaldricks.org/events/DelawareBraveTheShave
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0904 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.