Yet nothing could keep participants in this year’s St. Baldrick’s Day event from having a good time — and raising more money than ever to pay for research into childhood cancers.
More than 70 participants had their heads shaved for the cause, raising more than $22,000 and far exceeding the $15,000 goal set by organizers from the Patterson Fire Department. All of those people, as well as the donors and organizers, deserve kudos for their efforts.
Creekside Middle School teachers Valerie Jamieson and Joslyn Hernandez particularly showed courage, deciding to lop off their locks to help eradicate cancer. Jamieson noted that she had lost her aunt to cancer last week, a reminder that nearly everyone in this community has been personally touched by the ailment in one form or another.
Plenty of other participants this past weekend also had personal encounters with the childhood forms of disease. Members of the Greunke family lost 14-year-old Katelyn to bone cancer in 2004, and the Raimundo family’s son Joey is in remission after battling a form of leukemia six years ago.
Local residents don’t always agree on everything, but we can concur that cancer is a destructive ailment that wreaks havoc on individuals and families.
All who participated in the St. Baldrick’s Day event deserve great congratulations for doing their parts to eliminate cancer. One can only hope that spirit will translate into a large turnout at this year’s Relay For Life, which benefits the American Cancer Society, on May 19 and 20 at Patterson Community Stadium.