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Boys on a Mission to Support Kids With Cancer

Jun 29, 2018 06:00AM ● By Brian Choquet

From left- Mitchell Sullivan, Nate Deveno, Devin Healy, Jake Rothschild, Colin Sherman, Charlie Leighton, James Robey, Campbell, Logan Marchand, Jack Colman (in front of Lyric Healy), Conor Reilly, Sam Sullivan, James Nestor, Liam Cunningham, Eli Cowell, Nick Sullivan and Matthew Doyle. 

story & photo by Christine Doyle, Contributing Writer 

You may notice quite a few young boys with shaved heads as you make your way around Bellingham lately. These boys were part of a team of 20 who participated in a fundraising event, the One Mission Buzz Off, on Sunday, June 2nd.

The One Mission Buzz Off, according to its website, is a “pediatric cancer charity” for which “everyday heroes come together to shave their heads in honor and support of kids with cancer.”

This Bellingham team was made up mostly of 4th-grade boys along with two adults, one of whom had to shave his head a day earlier because of being unable to make it to the June 2 event.

The team has grown even larger since its inception last year, thanks to the organizer, Jenn Leighton, and her son Charlie. Jenn became familiar with this organization through her work as a pediatric oncology nurse years ago at Boston Children’s hospital. 

The founders were parents of a child undergoing treatment at the hospital. The founders were parents of a child undergoing treatment at the hospital. While practically living at Children’s, they realized that there was a need to provide additional support to patients and families beyond the care that the doctors and nurses provide. As a result, they formed One Mission Buzz Off nine years ago.

Years later, prior to Jenn’s having to undergo brain surgery, she opted to participate in this fundraiser herself. The following year, both she and her young son Charlie shaved their heads. 

Charlie was so happy to be doing this with his mom that he told his friends about it. His level of excitement was enough that some of his friends thought they wanted to do it with him, and the Bellingham Buzzers were formed last year.

This year the level of excitement spread and the team has grown. The boys loved being able to help raise money for kids with cancer and, to them, shaving their heads is their way to stand in support of those who do not have a choice in losing their hair. 

As Jenn Leighton puts it, “I know the boys don’t really understand the impact of what they are doing, but I do and it is tremendous.”

Tremendous indeed because of the fundraising this team did. The boys fourteen years and younger had a fundraising goal of $200, while the older ones had to raise $350. As of June 2, the team has raised over $7000 to help One Mission Buzz Off exceed their goal of raising $1 million.

For more information on this organization, please visit their website.





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