RCC inmates cut hair to support cancer fight

Published 8:30 am Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Who would have known that one man’s idea would turn into a compound-wide event? Nevertheless, that is exactly what happened for Breast Cancer Awareness Month at Rayburn Correctional Center.

The RCC Jaycees, an offender civic organization, support various charities in the community. Jaycees member Dwayne Stovall had the idea to ask a few friends to join him and shave their heads for the month of October in honor and support of those affected by breast cancer. Little did he know it would spread everywhere, until bald heads and shaved faces could be seen all over Rayburn’s compound.

When fellow Jaycees members were asked to join in, they were more than happy to support such a great cause. Once the idea reached Jaycees President, Eric Gresham, he decided to take it to the next step. His mother is currently fighting breast cancer, so he dove right in and decided to involve everyone.

A compound-wide challenge was sent out, inviting all who were willing to participate to gather together on Wind Unit to have their heads and faces shaved to show their support.

Several men did not wait until the scheduled event; many supported the cause all month long. From the very first day that the flyer was posted, bald heads started popping up everywhere.

The turnout for the event was great. Men from each unit of the compound gathered on Wind Unit to support the cause. While two members of the Jaycees controlled the clippers, one by one, men took to the barber chairs to let their locks fall. Some men even went all the way and had their eyebrows shaved off as well.

Many men did it for their wives or girlfriends. Some did it for their mothers or sisters. However, several did it for Ronnie Carter. Carter is a fellow member of the Rayburn community who has been battling cancer for some time now, and even though he could not be present at the event, he was there in the hearts of his friends as they honored his ongoing battle.

Age or race did not matter; all were welcome to come and show their support. A little over 30 people showed up to support the cause, but little did those involved know the support would not end when that afternoon’s event did.

Even after the Jaycees event had ended, support for the cause continued to pour out from the population. The barbershop was busy picking up where the Jaycees left off. Dozens of men had their heads shaved. The support for this cause is still continuing everyday with men showing how proud they are to support such a great cause.

The Rayburn community was also given the opportunity to donate to the Jaycees fundraiser for the charity. Some $560 was raised for breast cancer. A check in that amount was to be presented to Relay for Life on behalf of the Jaycees and the Rayburn Correctional Center community.

As Rayburn Warden Sandy McCain explained, “Even though our community is serving ‘hard labor,’ it is heartwarming to see the humanitarian side of the men come forth for those that have labored for us.”