Harvey Cedars and Ship Bottom Police Officers Forgo Shaving to Help Cancer Patients

Nov 08, 2017
Supplied Photo

Officers from the Harvey Cedars and Ship Bottom police departments won’t be spending a lot of time in front of the mirror this month, as they are participating in the “No Shave November” campaign aimed at bringing awareness and funding for cancer prevention, education and research. Members of the police departments will go through the entire month of November without shaving to help raise cancer awareness. Each of the officers will also voluntarily make a monetary donation.

“Cancer has an impact on everyone and in so many different ways,” Harvey Cedars Police Chief Robert Burnaford said. “Bringing awareness and funding for prevention, education and research is something that we can all take part in.”

The Harvey Cedars officers unanimously chose to have 100 percent of their donations go to the Joan Karnell Supportive Care Program at the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, where  Burnaford’s mother, Deborah Burnaford, is currently being treated for colorectal cancer.

“The fact that all of my officers wanted these funds to go to a cancer center of my mom’s choice truly means the world to me” Burnaford said, adding that within the first six days, the department raised $3,570.

Burnaford said “No Shave November” is a national movement, created by the Movember Foundation to raise funds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancer, and mental health for men. It is the first time the Harvey Cedars and Ship Bottom departments are participating.

“The goal of No-Shave November is to grow awareness by embracing our hair, which many cancer patients lose, and letting it grow wild and free,” it says on its website. “Donate the money you typically spend on shaving and grooming to educate about cancer prevention, save lives, and aid those fighting the battle.”

Burnaford said seeing officers with mustaches and beards is bound to draw curiosity.

“Officers are normally clean shaven,” he said. “They usually have strict codes when it comes to hair growth. So when people ask about the extra hair growth, officers will tell them about cancer awareness and prevention.”

Burnaford said some residents also are forgoing shaving for the month.

“It’s a show of solidarity,” he said.

“I’m really proud of what our officers are doing,” said Harvey Cedars Borough Commissioner Michael Garofalo, who is public safety chairman. “You’d be hard pressed to find someone who has not been directly affected by cancer, whether it is a family member or friend.”

Donations to help support cancer research can be made by visiting http://givingpages.upenn.edu/HarveyCedarsPolicenoshavenovember.

Ship Bottom Police Officer Chris Biester said, “It came to our attention that there is a little girl in Tuckerton, Lily Cramer, that is battling cancer for the third time.” He said LBI PBA 175 is matching and donating anything the officers raise.

Cramer, 7, is fighting brain tumor with her conventional doctors at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Biester said a new doctor is focusing on naturally boosting her immune system through nutrition and supplements, according to a go-fund-me page set up for her. The insurance company doesn’t cover holistic treatments.

Anyone wishing to donate can do so at gofundme.com/wxs58dsw-lilys-medical-fund.

— Eric Englund and Gina Scala


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