Firefighters at the Arcadia, Calif. Fire Department have a special place in their heart for children battling with cancer. The firefighters regularly make visits to the young patients at a local City of Hope hospital and raise money to support St. Baldrick's Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to funding pediatric cancer research.
This year, 30 Arcadia firemen participated in a fundraiser in which they got their heads shaved -- by child cancer patients -- to show solidarity with the children's experience.
"(It's) to experience for ourselves...one of the most stigmatizing aspects of childhood cancer - losing one's hair from chemotherapy treatment," said firefighter Drew Pryor, who took part in the annual shave-a-thon Tuesday night at MattDenny's Alehouse in Arcadia.
"You wake up the next day and you're still reminded of it. It keeps them in your thoughts and prayers," he said of the young patients.
Together, the firemen collected over $40,000 to be donated to St. Baldrick's, an accomplishment especially poignant to them because two of their fellow firefighters are currently waging personal battles with cancer.