Ladies ready to trim tresses to help cancer victims

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 21, 2007

Twenty-one generous souls will sacrifice their long tresses tonight for a very worthy cause. A mass &#8220hair cutting in the park” will take place in Confederate Park as part of an evening of good music, food and fun, all kicking off at 6 p.m.

The women and girls are contributing their hair to Locks of Love and Expressions of Love, two organizations that use donated hair to create wigs for cancer patients of all ages.

And the haircuts are already underway.

&#8220We already have five ponytails that have been cut and donated by Linda Hartley, Kandys Killough, Tiffany Owen, Liz Thaggard and Rosemary Russell,” said Jill Stallworth, organizer of the event.

&#8220Liz has donated the longest length so far - 16 inches!”

Stallworth said she was inspired to take on the project after seeing Ann Curry of the &#8220Today” Show cut her hair on air for Locks of Love last spring. She started looking for volunteers willing to grow their own locks for a good cause.

Others who will be participating in the event include Debra Arthur, Rebecca Butts, Mrs. Phillip Graham, Shannon Hartley, Olivia Idland Autrey, T.K. Lee, Meredith Mann, Abbey Martin, Elizabeth Matthews, Shera Norman, Marianne Russell, Jennifer Shealy, Katie Smith, Lois Smith, Samantha Smith, April Smith and Jill Stallworth.

Each of the ladies is donating their hair in honor or memory of someone with cancer.

&#8220I remember how hard it was for my late friend Ruby Earnest when she starting losing her hair during her cancer treatments. I am cutting my hair in memory of Ruby,” Stallworth said.

&#8220I am donating my hair in honor of Courtney, a leukemia survivor and also in honor of my friend, Madeline Breen,” said April Smith.

&#8220I hope they will both be there Saturday night.”

And each donor will have someone special snip off their ponytail during the ceremony. In Russell's case, it will be her good friend, Ashley Langford.

&#8220Ashley's mom, Linda Garner, battled with cancer, and I decided to cut my hair in her honor. Linda had the greatest laugh besides my Aunt Sugar that I have ever heard,” Russell said.

&#8220I just know Linda will be laughing as Ashley takes the scissors to my ponytail for Relay For Life.”

BBQ baskets with sandwiches, chips, dessert and drink will be sold in the park that night with all proceeds going to the Butler County Relay For Life. The noted acoustic band, The Alabama Gravy Soppers, will also be performing Saturday evening as part of the Main Street Concerts in the Park series.

&#8220Bring your quilts, lawn chairs and appetites. Come on out and see us lose our ponytails, listen to good music and enjoy good southern food. It's all for a great cause,” Stallworth said.