Walnut Creek sixth grader gets ready to lose his hair–to raise money for kids with cancer

If Brendan Miller is going to volunteer to have his blond locks shorn for a very good cause, he figures he might as well do it in style. 

First of all, the Walnut Creek Intermediate student has so far raised $1,000. He’s donating this money towards efforts by Walnut Creek police officers to pull together $100,000 for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a nonprofit organization that hosts head-shaving parties to raise money and to show solidarity for kids diagnosed with cancer. 

Brendan will be at a WCPD-sponsored head-shaving party in Civic Park next Tuesday afternoon.  And, yes, Brendan will be saying good bye to the hair on his head. 

However, the hair he’ll be losing Tuesday won’t be blond. Not anymore. That’s because Brendan, with the help of his grandmother Paula Miller, has been having fun making a fashion statement with the hair he will soon lose–while also learning valuable lessons about himself and helping others.

Says Paula Miller about the photos shown here: “First is the ‘natural’  Brendan, then he dyed his hair black, and the third photo shows him after almost two hours at Raymond Marc Salon where Robert added a more exciting color combination that will last until next Tuesday.”

Brendan, a graduate of Murwood Elementary, doesn’t know any kids who have had cancer, but has become excited about helping with this cause, Paula Miller says.

“More than 160,000 kids are diagnosed with cancer each year,” explains Sgt. Lanny Edwards, the Walnut Creek police officer who is organizing Tuesday’s head-shaving fundraiser. “Despite tremendous progress, cancer remains the No. 1 disease killer of children in the United States and Canada.” Adds Edwards: “We’re out to help change that.”

St. Baldrick’s has raised more than $83 million since 2000 with its unique head-shaving events. Brendan Miller will be doing his part to add to that pot of money to help kids with cancer. 

We are having a lot of fun with this project,” Paula Miller says. “It certainly has helped to build [Brendan’s] self-confidence when dealing with adults and other kids his age.” She adds that Brendan is not embarrassed “one bit” about going to school with dyed black hair–and now orange and black striped hair.

The Walnut Creek-sponsored event will be held Tuesday from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the community center, 1375 Civic Drive. The police department is coordinating this fundraiser and encouraging other law enforcement organizations, firefighters, businessmen, clubs, teams, groups, etc to come participate.
The St. Baldrick’s Foundation makes grants to research institutions to find new cures for childhood cancer, and to find treatments to ensure a better quality of life for patients and survivors.

For more information, visit the event website, or contact Sgt. Edwards with the Walnut Creek Police at (925) 256-3596. 

12 thoughts on “Walnut Creek sixth grader gets ready to lose his hair–to raise money for kids with cancer

  1. 7:40 p.m.
    Hey, I like this story. A lot, and I kinda know the kid, and I happen to love the photos his grandmother sent in. It's sweet and cool that this boy is doing this.

    If you're bored, don't read it.

    Yawn to your boredom.


  2. Nice job, Brendan, in raising so much for a great cause. I was actually going to participate myself on tuesday, but as my hair already has its own exit strategy, I didn't want to give it any ideas that it needs to accelerate the process. Instead, I'll be there to support Brendan and the others and contribute to the cause. Anyone else who wants to, come on down! Dave Powell


  3. He's raised $1,000? That's incredible. SM, maybe your story will get him some more. Kudos to this grandmother too for getting involved with her grandson on this.


  4. Thanks for working on this event Lanny. I took your advice and mede two donations on-line. It was quick and easy.


  5. Huston,
    Ahem! Is there a reason one of those two wasn't to me?? 🙂

    The assistant city attorney is about to pass me for most donations and I've been trying really hard not to have to beg Soccer Mom for $$$….


  6. Sgt. Edwards,

    It really is okay to 'beg' for money when it is for such a wonderful cause.

    Folks, keep those dollars rolling in so that one day we may see and end to not only childhood cancer but cancer of all kinds.

    Congratulations to WCPD for their efforts and sacrifice for a good cause.

    We love you guys and are behind you in all matters.


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