If the Cub Scouts exist to set good examples and teach valuable lessons to young children, then what happened this week at a meeting of Perrysburg, Ohio's Pack 110 may just have been one of the best den meetings of all time.
One by one, pack leaders and scouts stepped up, sat down and took turns shaving each others' heads. The buzz of the clippers didn't stop until the accumulated hair of 22 men and boys sat on the floor.
It was the ultimate act of heartwarming solidarity for a Pack that was missing two of it scouts.
"We have two young boys, one has Lymphomaand the other has Leukemia," Den Leader Steffan Webb told WUPW. "They're 8 and 10 years old, so they're both in the hospital right now, 24/7 with their families, going through chemo." The boys were both diagnosed within weeks of each other.
The first to shave their heads were the den and pack leaders, who were followed by the scouts -- and a web cam allowed one of the hospitalized boys to watch the whole thing as it happened.
Den Leader and event organizer Kevin Halligan told HLN that "He had a chance to actually see us all getting our heads shaved and he thought that was the coolest thing. He loved the fact that I got the reverse Mohawk. The fact that he was able to laugh -- it’s the best medicine right there."
"You’ll do anything to find a cure or do something to at least make them feel good."
Each year about 1,700 people under the age of 20 are diagnosed with lymphoma, according to KidsHealth.org. Leukemia is the most common type of cancer among children, with an estimated 3,500 new cases every year. Both are often treated with chemotherapy.
"It's a traumatic experience to lose your hair and we understand that and we want them to know that we're in support of them," Halligan told WUPW. "I'd do it again, there is no question about it -- especially for those boys."
Even if some of the cuts administered by the scouts left something to be desired. "We had hair everywhere! And I’m sure some of them had to go see the barber. Some had hair that was, uh, very spotty."
But Halligan told HLN that a "spotty" haircut is a small price to pay to send a message of support -- and a little laughter -- to their two friends. "When you look in the mirror, you’re going to remember that this is the reason why I did this. It’s a form of unity, we’re supporting you by doing this."