Raylene DeBenedictis, 12, and her father Shepherd DeBenedictis, cut their long locks of hair to help those suffering from medical hair loss. Rick Cruz/PDN
A father and daughter have been growing their hair for quite some time to help children and young adults suffering from medical hair loss.
Shepherd and Raylene DeBenedictis, went to Grace Beauty Shop in Tamuning earlier in the week to get their haircuts.
A family friend sparked an interest in the middle school student when she shared how her grandchildren had donated hair when they were younger.
With a smile on her face, Raylene says she was excited to cut her hair. This was the 12-year-old’s first cut in seven years.
The hairdresser cut off about 12 inches of her blonde wavy hair. The blue-eyed sixth-grader was rocking a “lighter-feeling” hair bob.
For about a year Shepherd had grown his gray hair for the sole purpose of donating. The last time he recalls growing out his hair was back in college.
He says he was also excited to cut his hair off, noting he gets ‘man bun’ jokes from time to time.
“Lets roll,” said Shepherd before he sat for his cut. He wanted to donate all the hair he could, recounting 8 inches needed for his chosen organization.
‘Hair comes and goes’
The Dededo residents will be mailing their freshly cut ponytails to Wigs for Kids and 360 Hair Inc. Both organizations help children and their families at no cost.
Shepherd is a retired Air Force pilot who along with his wife Margie made Guam their home 20 years ago.
“Hair comes and goes but the good feeling you get inside lasts,” he said.
“If anyone would care to do so… there are many organizations each have different requirements.”
How to donate to Wigs for Kids
Wigs for Kids has been serving children suffering from hair loss since 1981.
The nonprofit provides hair replacement systems and support for children who have lost their hair due to chemotherapy, radiation therapy, Alopecia, Trichotillomania, burns and other medical issues at no cost to children or their families, according to the site.
For more information and guidelines to donate visit wigsforkids.org.
360 Hair is 100 percent voluntarily work making wigs for cancer patients ages 19 and under, according to the site. For more information visit 360-hair.com.
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