WESTBOROUGH, Mass. -- When Cathy Curboy is delivering mail on her Southborough route, the letter carrier is getting some surprised looks. It's because of her hair, or lack thereof.
Along with hundreds of others, Curboy had her head shaved as part of the third annual Cancer Kids Buzz-Off fundraiser over the weekend at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough.
"When I heard about it, I knew I had to do it," the Sturbridge resident said. "I didn't have money to give, but I have hair. I can do this."
Participants gathered sponsors who donated money, which is distributed by the Westborough-based One Mission organization to help children and their families impacted by cancer.
The spectacle of shaving shows solidarity with cancer patients, who do not have a choice when their hair falls out due to treatment.
Curboy said she has had a lot of support, especially at her class at McCoy's Action Karate in Auburn, where she has a rank of black belt. Curboy wore her belt and her uniform to the event.
According to One Mission President and founder Ashley Haseotes, the June 3 event raised over $540,000. The money will go to Childrens Hospital in Boston and support oncology services and research. The funds will also help those with extraordinary needs, such as including bills and mortgage payments, that are incurred due to the cost of treatment.
About 450 had their heads shaved as part of their fund-raising plan, including over 100 women.
Haseotes said that, as a parent of a cancer survivor, she remembers long days in hospitals with her son. "We used to get down hearing about others who were living life. We felt terrified and alone. You think no one cares."
"The Buzz-Off is about both raising money and coming together and telling families, 'We know what's happening," Haseotes said. "This is saying that we do care."
According to Haseotes, next year's Buzz-Off has a bigger goal--to raise $1 million. "I've already got 50 people signed up for next year."
One of those participants may be Curboy's daughter, Erin Fogerty, 17. She is considering participating in next year's event to make a statement, just before graduation. Meanwhile, you can still support Curboy's efforts by making a donation here.