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Hair today, gone Monday

By Sharon Gray | Feb. 22, 2013

Jessica Holmes will be coming to work with a bald head after lunch hour on Monday, Feb. 25. She’s an administrative staff specialist with the Faculty of Medicine’s Expansion Office, and this year she’s participating in Young Adult Cancer Canada’s Shave for the Brave.

“This is my first time doing the Shave for the Brave – although it has always intrigued me,” said Ms. Holmes. “It’s something that I have always wanted to do, but I couldn’t make myself do it when I had graduations and weddings on the go. Now, having already finished those things and having gotten married last fall, there is no reason for me not to rock a shaved head now.”

Three of Ms. Holmes’s female cousins participated in Shave for the Brave last year.

“They really inspired me to do it. Young Adult Cancer Canada is a great organization that helps young people with cancer, an age group that is often overlooked. The stories that they share are of those who are fighting or who have fought cancer are truly inspiring and touch me deeply. It makes me very happy to know that the money I raise will be helping them help young adult cancer patients, and that my hair will become a wig for a child with cancer.”

Ms. Holme’s fundraising efforts are going better than she anticipated.

“I originally set a goal of $250 to shave my head; if I raised less I would just donate 10 inches of hair. Within four hours, I had already doubled my goal with $555. This has quickly escalated and I now sit around $1,717 – with more donations that I have been promised but not collected yet. This has all been raised since Feb. 1. The generosity of people has truly blessed my heart. My friends keep telling me that people must really want to see me bald! I really want to hit $2,000 by the date of the shave, and I hope that with the help of others, I can.”

As for keeping warm with a bald head, Ms. Holmes said for Valentine’s Day her husband bought her a faux fur and purple plaid hat, ear flaps and all, so her head won’t get cold.

“While I sleep, I imagine I will wear my yellow Shave toque, at least for the first little while!”

Ms. Holmes is currently in fourth place in raising donations according to the Newfoundland and Labrador Shave for the Brave website. If anyone would like to pledge on behalf of her shave, they can donate in person at her office in H1772 or donate online at

“Thank you to everyone who has supported me so far, and to those who will do so in the future,” she said. “I am extremely thankful, and I know Young Adult Cancer Canada is too.”

The Shave for the Brave takes place on Monday, Feb. 25, at 1 p.m. in The Loft, University Centre.

“I welcome everyone to come along and support me, and have a laugh – because I know I will certainly be laughing.”