ROCKWOOD – Sporting a clean-shaven head is certainly convenient given the weather lately, but for Nicole Rog, her new look means so much more than staying cool.
A special constable with the Wellington County OPP, Rog was one of two OPP officers to shave their heads during a “Cops for Cancer” fundraiser on June 1 at the Rockwood station.
Rog and her partner Pam Bray, also a special constable, decided to organize the event due to their personal connections to people affected by the disease.
Bray’s mom passed away with brain cancer and her sister-in-law is currently fighting breast cancer.
Rog’s connections include a close friend currently battling breast cancer, an uncle who passed due to lung cancer, and two friends who died from brain and pancreatic cancer.
“We thought it would be a way to … show solidarity for people close to us that are going through cancer … and also to support the Canadian Cancer Society,” Rog told the Advertiser on June 2.
Close to 40 people attended the fundraiser, which also included a barbecue and a silent auction.
The event has raised about $3,000 thus far in cash donations and online contributions through the “Wellington Warriors” page on the cancer society’s Cops for Cancer website.
“This made me feel more compassionate for those who have gone through chemo and lost their hair. It makes you more empathetic,” Bray stated in an email.
“Being able to support this cause was very humbling in the sense we don’t realize how incredibly strong those living with cancer truly are.”
As an added bonus for Rog, her hair was long enough to donate to the CanDonate Hair Foundation.
She shaved her head for a fundraiser about eight years ago and has been growing her hair out ever since in order to donate it to charity.
“It’s a good feeling to do it … I have a lot of emotion about it,” she said, her voice shaking.
Rog noted the positive feedback she’s received about the event makes it all the more worthwhile.
“I just want to say how humbled I am to have been a part of this day,” she stated.
“This was more emotionally overwhelming than I would have thought, particularly hearing how supported people who have survived cancer or are currently experiencing cancer felt seeing the event.
“The resilience they show in their fight against cancer cannot be matched, but this was the best way I felt we could show how much we care.”
Anyone interested in supporting the cause can visit the “Wellington Warriors” page on the Cops for Cancer website.