AT&T Stadium was buzzing Sunday where hundreds of people gathered to shave their heads to support a charity that helps families of kids battling cancer.
One Mission started in Boston five years ago and came to Arlington for the first time this year.
Participants will be asked for weeks about their buzz cuts and they’ll be happy to talk about it.
“Kids don’t have a choice about keeping their hair and I do and I’m doing it for them,” said Rene Avila. “I lost my grandmother to cancer so I’m here to support.”
Avila had been growing his Afro to the point he was ready to get it cut, but then he heard about this event and let it grow for months. During that time he raised more than $1,000 for charity. One Mission helps families deal with the loss of income while caring for their kids with cancer.
The charity’s founder, Ashley Haseotes, is a cancer mom.
“When you’re stuck at a hospital day after day you kind of start to wonder does anybody know what’s going on up here? Does anybody care? And you feel alone,” said Haseotes, whose son is now 9-years-old and cancer-free after being diagnosed at 7 months. “That’s why I came up with the idea for the Buzz Off, because I wanted the parents and children to know they’re not alone.”
Among the crowd, a childhood cancer survivor from Midlothian who grew his hair out in anticipation of being part of the Buzz Off.
“As a 16-year-old it was scary,” said John Grimes. “Going to an oncologists office and being the youngest one there by at least three or four decades so when I saw this I was like, you know it sort of brings you back.”
Dozens of women got it all buzzed off, too. Including Angela Senor, a Dallas hairstylist who raised $7,000 for the kids’cancer charity. She got emotional during her shave and it wasn’t because she’d miss her hair.
“I was thinking about all of the people in my life who’ve been touched by cancer and I was thinking about children who don’t have enough support or they just need more,” said Senor.
The charity, One Mission, has raised nearly $2 million through the Kids Cancer Buzz Off in its first four years. This year organizers expect to raise about $1.6 million between Sunday’s event in Arlington and the one coming up in Boston in June.