Courtney Graves has no problem letting go of her long blond hair.
For the second time in her 11 years, the Grade 6 Len Wood Middle School student chopped off her mane and donated it to the Canadian Cancer Society.
Sitting comfortably in the chair at Yvonne’s Hair Studio in Spallumcheen, where owner Yvonne Miller has been her official haircutter for the last six years, Graves has 22-inches of hair in a ponytail ready to be cut and given to the cancer society.
“I donated once before, about four years ago, and I’ve been letting it grow ever since,” smiled Graves, who had her mom, Cindy, along for support.
It was mom who read daughter a story in a newspaper about a person donating their hair to make wigs for cancer victims that first led Graves to donating her first locks when she was nearly eight-years-old.
Mom wasn’t at all surprised when Courtney said she wanted to again give away her hair, which, according to the student, is the envy of a number of her friends.
“She’s such a sweet girl and she’s always considerate to people and animals,” said Cindy.
Asked if she knew people personally who had been affected by cancer, Courtney said there was a guy on her soccer team whose mom had the disease, and Cindy added that Courtney’s aunts are prone to skin cancer.
Courtney is the only child among Miller’s clientele who voluntarily donates her hair to the cancer society.
A stylist for 32 years, Miller said she sometimes sees clients who come in for haircuts because they have cancer.
“It’s the hardest thing for me to do,” said Miller. “It’s sad because they come in and they still have a lot of hair, but it’s falling out by the handful so they need to shave it off.”
With that, Graves has a black cape put on her, Millers takes out a pair of scissors, and, in a matter of just a couple of minutes, snips off Graves’ ponytail.