For an individual who doesn’t care a lot about the best way it seems to be on him, Clark College pitcher and outfielder Zach Gitschier has spent a lot of the previous few years eager about hair.
With about 14 inches of it dangling all the way down to across the center of his again, the previous Lowell Catholic standout hasn’t thought a lot about the way it drapes over his shoulders or what fashion he ought to make of it. He brushes apart impolite feedback about the best way it seems to be, one time laughing off a “who’s the lady pitching,” comment from a spectator that precipitated turmoil within the stands of a Lowell Publish 87 American Legion recreation.
As a substitute, rising out his hair over the past two years has all the time been a devotion to donating it, which he’ll do on Thursday when he lastly will get it reduce. The sophomore plans to ship the hair and no matter funds he can elevate to the Youngsters With Hair Loss group. By way of every week, that fundraiser has already surpassed the unique $2,000 purpose, and he hopes the donations will maintain coming.
He additionally hopes to present one thing past mere cash.
“The quantity of (feedback) you get for having lengthy hair as a man is type of humorous in my sense, however lots of people take it to coronary heart,” Gitschier mentioned. “The factor I need to stress to individuals is the positivity of all the pieces. It doesn’t actually matter when you have hair or should you don’t have hair; the primary factor is that you just’re comfortable. By doing this, I’m hoping to make not solely my family and friends comfortable, but additionally (making) the individuals who want it most comfortable.”
Gitschier’s girlfriend jokes with him that she’s been ready for this haircut as a result of she needs her hair to be longer than his. However she and the opposite individuals near him know this isn’t simply any random flash of philanthropy. This donation has been a very long time coming.
The primary style of it got here within the sixth grade, when a trainer impressed Gitschier and his mother and father to donate cash to the household of a younger boy battling most cancers. Gitschier met the grandmother of the boy, and after seeing how a lot of an influence the donation made, he realized simply how nice this form of factor made him really feel. The concept to donate hair popped into his thoughts, however he didn’t have sufficient since Catholic faculties don’t let college students develop their hair previous their ears.
When Gitschier’s junior yr at Lowell Catholic rolled round, he discovered a youth he coached had lately been recognized with alopecia – a situation involving the lack of all physique hair. A dialog together with his mother and father about it impressed him, and a plan — regardless of the principles about hair — was set in movement.
“His household had informed me about simply a number of the self-conscious emotions he was feeling about not having any hair, that type of factor,” Gitschier mentioned. “Particularly at that age, he was solely – I need to say 11 or 12 on the time, possibly even youthful. It simply began hitting me, this may be a great factor to do.”
The concept to start out rising it out got here across the time hockey gamers develop out their hair, and he initially thought his hair would prolong to simply in regards to the high of his shoulders. However as soon as he realized a donation must be not less than eight inches, he let it develop out.
After doing a little analysis, Gitschier got here throughout the Youngsters With Hair Loss basis, which was based by a lady whose niece battled most cancers and misplaced her hair. He selected to donate there as a result of all the cash donated goes towards hair alternative remedies. He reached out to them to see in the event that they had been nonetheless accepting donations through the pandemic — they had been.
The way in which Gitschier figured it, a $2,000 purpose would cowl two remedies at about $1,000 per therapy. However ever since posting a video explaining his trigger, the Lowell, Clark and surrounding communities have pooled collectively over $3,000 – far more than Gitschier anticipated throughout a time of monetary hardship.
“It’s an unreal feeling,” he mentioned in a textual content. “I can’t thank everyone sufficient and hopefully we will maintain exceeding my expectations!”
Contributions might be made to the GoFundMe fundraiser at www.gofundme.com/f/zach039s-campaign-for-children-with-hair-loss-inc?utm_source=buyer&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_campaign=p_cf+share-flow-1.