Abuzz with Generosity

Austin Gallagher with his mom Krissy Dietrich Gallagher

Austin Gallagher with his mom Krissy Dietrich Gallagher

Nearly 180 children and adults shaved their heads at the Cleveland Heights Community Center in March and raised a goal-shattering $111,000 for St. Baldrick’s Foundation, benefiting childhood cancer research. Local schoolchildren rallied to raise money in memory of Rebecca Meyer of Cleveland Heights, who died from a brain tumor on her sixth birthday in 2014.

The event also honored six-time shavee and two-time cancer survivor Austin Gallagher, a third-grader at Fairfax Elementary School in Cleveland Heights and Rainbow patient. Austin’s mother and event organizer Krissy Dietrich Gallagher said she is humbled by the community’s strong support and generosity. "My son Austin is alive today not because he was strong, which he was, and not because he was loved, which he was, but because of advances in medical research," she said. "I will keep fighting this fight until all parents can say the same thing."

Also braving the shave, more than 120 UH doctors, nurses, researchers, patients and friends took part in Rainbow's 5th Annual St. Baldrick's head-shaving event in the Rainbow Performance Area with colleagues from Case Western Reserve University. Together they raised more than $100,000 for St. Baldrick's.

The foundation began as a challenge between friends and in 16 years has grown into the world’s largest volunteer-driven and donor-centered fundraising program for childhood cancer research. More than $1 million in funds raised has come back to support pediatric cancer research at Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital, Seidman Cancer Center and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine.


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