Shear courage

By Michael Ullery

January 23, 2014

By Belinda M. Paschal


PIQUA — Three co-workers at the Piqua Red Lobster collectively shed about 40 inches of hair Thursday at Fanci Flair Hair & Nail Care, the first step in their plan to donate the lopped-off locks to Wigs for Kids.

“I have family members and friends dealing with the cancer issue, so I thought, ‘What better way to give back?’” said Robin Stout, a culinary professional and server at Red Lobster.

“I’m a little nervous, but I know I’m in good hands,” she said as she surrendered some 18 inches of hair to Fanci Flair owner Kelley Hall’s scissors. “On my 50th birthday, my son had taken me to get my hair cut to the tops of my shoulders. I’m 54 now, and I’ve been growing it since that last haircut.”

Jen Golden, a baker at Red Lobster, admitted she’s gotten attached to the thick hair that cascaded past her backside — an impressive 44 inches grown over a seven-year period — but was willing to give up a foot of it for a good cause. Her locks were so long that she had to stand rather than sit while stylist Lacey Oswald prepared the section that was to be cut.

“I have three children and I would want someone to be generous and help my child if they were ever in need,” said Golden, whose 8-year-old daughter, Pearl, also donated a foot of hair.

“Children are wonderful and they should be able to go out and play without feeling insecure,” she said, adding that she intends to donate again at the end of the summer.

Red Lobster manager Angie Herron made a bold hairstyle choice, allowing stylist Angela Johnson to cut 10-12 inches off of her mid-back-length waves, leaving her with a stylish, stacked bob.

“We’d been thinking about doing it for a while now,” Herron said of herself, Stout and Golden. “I just wanted to try to do something for other people, for kids that are in a bad situation.”

For more than three decades, Wigs for Kids has provided hair replacement and support at no cost to children who have lost their hair due to chemotherapy, radiation therapy, alopecia, trichotillomania, burns and other medical issues.

The non-profit organization relies solely on donations to make durable, custom hair replacement systems that look like a child’s natural hair. The Wigs for Kids office receives two to three mail crates of hair donations from all over the country each day, according to the group’s website at www.wigsforkids.org.

“The hair has to be banded every two inches, wrapped in tissue paper and sealed in a Ziploc bag,” Stout noted. “They said it’s really hard to get anything over 12 inches, so we ought to make them really happy. We get to write a little note to go in with our hair and the note will go to the person who received our hair. I thought that was different and nice.”

When all was said and done, all three ladies were pleased with their new cuts and said they instantly felt lighter — not just in hair, but in heart.

Belinda M. Paschal may be reached at (937) 773-2721 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall.