Science teacher Matt Knoepke grew a beard for one good cause and sacrificed it for another.
Knoepke was the second “shavee” at the sixth annual St. Baldrick’s Day event, held Saturday, March 7, in the south building cafeteria at Homewood-Flossmoor High School.
The event is sponsored by the H-F National Honor Society chapter to raise money for pediatric cancer research. Going suddenly bald is a way for students and community members to not only raise money but also show solidarity with children who lose their hair during cancer treatment.
Before Knoepke stepped on stage for his comprehensive haircut, he explained that he grew his beard last fall in preparation for running in the Rudolph Ramble 8K in December. The event is a benefit for the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital.
He portrayed Santa Claus for his running team.
“Today, it’s coming off,” he said.
Honor Society members Marlene Slaughter and Josian McFadden took turns with the clippers, and when they were done, Knoepke said he was pleased with the result.
“The kids did a great job,” he said.
It was Knoepke’s first time participating in the event, but the shavee who preceded him, Chris Kush, is a veteran of five St. Baldrick’s Day hair cuts.
“My head’s a little cold,” he said afterward, “but at least it’s for a good cause.”
Chris’s father, faculty advisor David Kush, said the Honor Society raises money through a number of activities during the day, but pledges brought in by shavees account for the bulk of the fundraising.
He said he expected the project to raise about $10,000 this year.
Contact Eric Crump at [email protected]