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Analy High School faculty get clipped for a good cause

  • Alishua Johnson shaves the head of Analy principal Chris Heller at lunch on Thursday. Analy High School students shaved their teachers and administrators heads, beards and mustaches as a fundraiser for wrestling coach Ryan Stevens, who was diagnosed with Stage 4 melanoma skin cancer.

Today is a sunscreen-or-cap day for Analy High Principal Chris Heller and a dozen fellow faculty members, who were shaved bald Thursday to the delight of a colleague convinced that such caring helps as he strives to reclaim his health and his hair in a match with cancer.

"It's too much!" a beaming Ryan Stevens said at the noontime "Shave 2 Save" clipper fest on the Sebastopol school's quad.

"I feel a lot of love and prayer," the sidelined wrestling coach and Spanish teacher said, gazing over the large, sun-washed gathering of students and staffers.

Shaving Heads For Cancer At Analy

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The fundraising spectacle followed good news from his last diagnostic scan: "The brain tumors are shrinking," Stevens said.

His wife, Jaredel, and his parents, Jim and Eldona Stevens, and other members of his large family came with him to Analy. It was a stirring moment for the 35-year-old father of four and his clan when he was greeted back onto campus by a great, Tigers roar.

"It's amazing. I'm speechless," Jaredel Stevens said from her husband's side. "I'm feeling it. We're seeing miracles."

People from several facets of Ryan Stevens' life — wrestlers and coaches, the Sebastopol community, fellow members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — have rallied and raised relief money since word spread that he struggles with advanced-stage melanoma.

For the Analy benefit, male teachers and administrators agreed to have their heads or facial hair shaved if donors would fill two five-gallon water bottles with money to help the Stevenses cover medical expenses and get by.

Well before Thursday, the bottles brimmed with cash.

When the lunch bell rang, a couple of professional barbers stood ready in the quad to help some pre-selected students wield the clippers.


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