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Brave the shave

Childhood cancer ― how big is the problem?

The statistics are startling. According to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation:

  1. More children are lost to cancer in the United States than any other disease.
  2.  Before they turn 20, about 1 in 285 children in the United States will have cancer.
  3. Worldwide, a child is diagnosed with cancer every three minutes.

Researchers are working to find cures and focus on the prevention of the lifelong damage that results from surgeries, radiation and chemotherapies given while young bodies and brains are developing.

Five Capital Electric Cooperative employees are helping to raise money and awareness, and help researchers cure childhood cancer and improve supportive care for patients. On March 13, Paul Fitterer, Brad Johnson, Ron Lipp, Braden Martin and Beau Townsend will “Brave the Shave” at the Missouri Valley Family YMCA in Bismarck.

This is the second year Fitterer, Lipp and Townsend are participating, and the eighth year Basin Electric Power Cooperative is co-sponsoring the event.

The campaign has evolved from a single event to a multi-state campaign, featuring several head-shaving events throughout the community and beyond to raise money for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a volunteer-driven charity committed to funding the most promising research to find cures for childhood cancers and give survivors long, healthy lives.

Fitterer, Capital Electric’s business manager, got involved a couple years ago when his daughter, Hattie, cut her hair and donated it to Locks of Love. He’s says he’s shaving his head again, in support of the kids who suffer from cancer. And, he jokes, because Lipp is making him do it.

Lipp, the engineering and operations manager, grew a thick mop of hair before getting shaved for the first time in March 2012. He says he’s participating again because it’s a good thing for the co-op family to do together.

Townsend, assistant staking engineer, perhaps has the most to lose — because he has the least amount of hair. A good sport, he also agreed to brave the shave to help kids with cancer.

Newly married, Martin, a lineman, says his wife has no problem with him going bald for a good cause.

Johnson, a lineman, made this promise: “If I save one kid, I’ll shave it every year.”

We’ll hold you to it, Brad.

Capital Electric Cooperative is quite proud of these five men, who are a shining example of the Touchstone Energy® value of commitment to community. Next month, we plan to show their shiny heads, and let you know how the team did in their fundraising efforts.

For information on Locks of Love, visit http://locksoflove.org/. For information on the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, visit http://www.stbaldricks.org/.

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