“I chose to spearhead this event because I saw the benefits that it provided for the local community at my old school in Illinois, as well as for the foundation itself. I thought it would be a great way for our school community to achieve a similar outcome and rally around a tremendous cause,” Mr. Banach said.
Five teachers and 15 students served on the St. Baldrick’s committee, selling T-shirts and recruiting shavees, among other tasks. Many other teachers and students got involved by collecting and donating money or volunteering to have their heads shaved.
Some students showed their creative sides as they raised money for St. Baldrick’s. Taylor Christner, a senior at Combs, received permission from her supervisors at Gateway 12 IMAX theatres in Mesa to place a donation jar at the concession stand. When customers paid for their movie snacks, Taylor asked if they wanted to donate their change to help fund cancer research. Taylor was able to raise nearly $200 for the cause.
Local businesses also got involved, among them Little Caesars and Great Clips. The pizza company donated $1 for every pizza they sold throughout the day on Feb. 14, and the salon sent three barbers to shave heads for the event.
Dakota Osmer, a senior who had his head shaved at the event, had a special reason for doing so. “My grandma died three years ago from cancer and I’ve always wanted to do something in her memory. Although the money raised won’t help her, it will help other people with cancer,” he said.
The assembly on March 9, attended by students and faculty of Combs High School, was a huge success. Not only did the school raise nearly $5,000 for the St. Baldrick’s foundation, but there was such a feeling of camaraderie and warmth in the room that it brought tears to the eyes of some of the teachers and parents who attended the event. This is definitely something that will become a lasting tradition at Combs High School.
Editor’s Note: Wendi Anderson is a teacher at CHS as well as the English department chair and yearbook adviser.