Tue. Oct 19th, 2021

Abbie Johnson, a freshman at Leesville, shaved her head for St. Baldrick’s on Sunday, January 4. Johnson’s father has leukemia; she shaved her head in honor of him.

As well as shaving her head, Johnson also raised money for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. Johnson managed to raise $3,190 for the foundation through social media and friends.

The St. Baldrick’s Foundation is a charity organization that raises money to research childhood cancer. The foundation chooses to focus on children’s cancer and not adult cancer because often other organizations choose to fund and research adult cancer. The foundation encourages people to raise money for a period of time, and then shave their heads at the end.

The St. Baldrick’s Foundation hosts “head shaving events” where people can register and have “shavers” shave their heads for them. These events are held in many places, including malls and even restaurants. The first head shaving event was held in 2000, then one thing led to another, and the St. Baldrick’s Foundation was founded in 2004. Anyone can participate, from children to adults, and everyone is encouraged to. St. Baldrick’s aims to impact children’s cancer for the better.

Almost everyone at Leesville knows someone who has cancer, whether it’s a friend, family member, or classmate. For those who know family, cancer is a closer to home. Abbie Johnson, a freshman at Leesville, can speak from experience.

Johnson’s father was diagnosed with leukemia in May of last year. He then began treatment at Duke hospital.

“He got admitted to the hospital and he had to stay there for a few months and then after that he got to move to an apartment nearby and he…stayed there for another…3 to 4 months and…went to the clinic at Duke,” said Johnson.

The experience affected Johnson and her family in many ways, both inside and outside the home. “We had to have a lot of caretakers and it…was different because my dad wasn’t there all the time so it felt weird, we had to drive to…Duke…to see him all the time so it just felt weird…me and my mom and my little brother went on some trips without my dad which felt really weird too,” said Johnson.

To support her father, Johnson shaved her head. She managed to raise $3,190 for St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a charity organization that raises money to research childhood cancer. Johnson used social media and friends to accomplish her goal.

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