Birthday girl to give up her hair as a gift for ill children

Birthday girl to give up her hair as a gift for ill children

From left, Leigh Abbott, Shannon Timms and Sarah Buckingham

Hugo after chemotherapy

Shannon Timms and Hugo Abbott

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Witney and West Oxfordshire. Call me on 01865 425483

MANY young girls look forward to being treated on their birthday with presents, a nice meal out, or even a fancy new hairdo.

But Shannon Timms, from North Leigh, near Witney, will spend her 12th birthday celebrations this weekend watching her long, wavy hair drop to the floor as she has her head shaved for charity.

She decided to take on the challenge to benefit other children who have had to lose their hair because of cancer, such as former school friend Hugo Abbott.

He said Shannon’s fundraising gesture was “awesome”.

Nine-year-old Hugo’s own hair fell out during treatment after he was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in July 2010.

Wood Green School pupil Shannon said: “Most people on their birthday want presents, like a new gadget, but I want to make a difference for those who are less fortunate and have cancer.

“Children should be able to live a life without having to worry about having no hair and it’s more important that I raise some money from my hair than have it myself.”

Shannon’s birthday is on Thursday and she has organised the head shave at North Leigh’s Turner Hall on Saturday.

She will donate her hair to the Little Princess Trust, which makes wigs for young cancer patients, and she has already raised more than £1,000 for children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent.

It provided support and outreach nurses for Hugo, a pupil at North Leigh Primary School, where Shannon used to attend.

Hugo’s condition, which affects about 400 children a year in the UK, is a cancer of the white blood cells that begins in bone marrow.

He had an operation to remove three tumours from his spine at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.

Hugo had little or no hair for three years while he underwent chemotherapy, but he has been in remission and free of treatment since last September.

He said: “It felt very strange not having any hair – it made me feel glum and I was desperate for it to grow back.

“It was a miracle when my hair came back but it took a very long time. Shannon donating her hair is very kind and thoughtful – she is awesome.”

Hugo’s mum, Leigh Abbott, 39, said she and her husband Tim, 42, a draughtsman, first noticed there were problems when their son was feeling lethargic and unwell just before his fifth birthday.

She said: “Being told he had cancer was the worst news you could ever possibly hear – it was absolutely devastating.

“He didn’t have the same energy as his friends, couldn’t run around and didn’t have a full head of hair.

“He was still a happy, joyful boy but there was always that aspect that he knew he looked different, which was upsetting.

“His hair has come back with a vengeance, with twice as much as he had in the first place.”

Mrs Abbott applauded Shannon’s gesture, adding: “The fact she’s willing to give up her hair so another little boy or girl will feel better is amazing.

“It’s an astonishing gesture for a 12-year-old girl because I certainly know I wouldn’t have been able to do that at her age, so it’s great courage on her behalf.”

Shannon’s legal secretary mum Sarah Buckingham, 37, said: “Her hair is long and curly and is what you notice first when you see her.

“But she’s so selfless and as far as she’s concerned it’s just hair and will grow back.”

The event, which also includes a silent auction, raffle, tombola, games, stalls and a barbecue, will be held at the village hall in Church Lane from 2pm to 5pm, with the headshave taking place at 4pm.

  • To sponsor Shannon, visit justgiving.com/Shannon-Timms

 

  • Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone’s contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

Send your Letter to the Editor

11:20am Monday 28th July 2014

What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter through the blue headline above.

Our top stories

Update: Pensioner killed in crash with Ford Focus on A4183 near Abingdon

Oxford Mail:

5:32pm Wednesday 26th November 2014

A PENSIONER died last night after a crash in Abingdon.

Oxford-born author PD James dies aged 94

Oxford Mail:

1:46pm Thursday 27th November 2014

PD James, the acclaimed author famous for her series of detective novels, has died aged 94.

Care home residents are going animal crackers

Oxford Mail:

5:40pm Thursday 27th November 2014

CARE home residents could hardly believe their eyes when their home was invaded by farmyard animals.

Emerald Isle’s Riverdance rolls in for twentieth anniversary gig

Oxford Mail:

5:40pm Thursday 27th November 2014

IRELAND’S famous Riverdance show is in Oxford to celebrate its 20th anniversary.

Police performance rated good on new website

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

5:30pm Thursday 27th November 2014

THAMES Valley Police has been rated “good” for effectiveness and efficiency on a new website the public can inspect.

Baby was ‘at home with dad when he stopped breathing’

Oxford Mail:

5:00pm Thursday 27th November 2014

AN 11-week-old baby whose death police are treating as suspicious has been named as Jayden Saxton.

 

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree