Wayne Post
  • Cut It for Cancer honors former classmate Lizzie Spencer

  • At the third annual Cut It for Cancer event at the Palmyra-Macedon Intermediate School students, teachers, staff and visitors took a moment to honor the memory of former classmate Lizzie Spencer — and danced.

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  • At the third annual Cut It for Cancer event at the Palmyra-Macedon Intermediate School students, teachers, staff and visitors took a moment to honor the memory of former classmate Lizzie Spencer — and danced.
    On their feet, hands up, singing along to Taio Cruz’s “Dynamite”, the over 100 in attendance got their groove on to pay a joyous tribute to Spencer during an event she looked forward to every year. Lizzie lost her battle with brain cancer on Aug. 13, 2012 at the age of 9. The first ever Cut It for Cancer was just prior to Lizzie’s diagnosis. The second was dedicated to her as she fought her own cancer and made her hairdresser for a day as she cut away ponytail after ponytail at the event. Her dad, Jim, said the special treat for the day was her opportunity to shave Principal Chip Dolce’s head.
    This year, the event marked Lizzie’s memory as a “shooting star” — a moniker for Lizzie her dad found quite fitting. There was some concern that the event would be more than the Spencer family could manage as the grieving process continues, but Jim said canceling would have grieved Lizzie.
    “For us it was a very easy thing,” Jim said of his family’s decision to take part in the Cut It for Cancer event this year. “Lizzie would want this to happen, so it had to happen.”
    The day’s events included an emotional ceremony in which Lizzie’s parents, Jim and Andrea, and brother, Jon, were presented a memorial plaque from Lizzie’s third grade classmates. A tearful Andrea also accepted a trophy from Wayne County Fair Demolition Derby driver Brittany Sheetz and fourth grader Krewson Peets. Friends of Lizzie’s, the duo painted the derby car Lizzie’s choice colors, purple and green, promising her that is the car won best paint, Lizzie would get the trophy. When the car did indeed win, Sheetz and Peets wanted to follow through with that promise by giving the trophy to Lizzie’s family.
    Then the cutting began. Some 40 participants had at least 8 inches of hair cut from their hair in an event that grows with each year that passes. Organizer Rachael Fedor is a physical education teacher at the school said it all started three years ago when she decided she wanted to cut her hair.
    “There’s all these kids running around all over the place with long hair,” she recalled. “I thought, ‘We could be cutting this and donating it.’”
    And so it began. This year’s hairdressers included Rachael Fedor, Terri Hopkins, Terra Leo, Hair Dynamics, Beau Monde Spa, Scott Miller Salon, Beauty and Beyond, Roots and Michael Spitale Salon.
    Shirts made especially for the event were donated by Terry Leone of Catamount Associates and Christopher Santelli of New York Life.
    Page 2 of 2 - Fedor would like to thank everyone who got their hair cut. All ponytails will be donated to Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths, a program which helps women fighting cancer receive free, real-hair wigs.
    Among those cutting their hair to support the cause, was the entire Spencer family, although only Andrea’s locks were long enough to be donated. Jim said his family is doing alright as they continue the healing process. Lizzie was a bright, shining, courageous and inspiring young lady and he had no doubt she made it to this year’s event.
    “As with any grieving parent, the most important thing is for your child to live on,” he said. “We want to keep that going. She’s here, you know? She’s here today.”
    Cut It for Cancer participants: Courtney Knapp, Janet Peets-Goole, Elizabeth Loughlin, Audrey Loughlin, Paige Batterby, Emily Batterby, Sadie Batterby, Megan Moomaw, Kayla Chaffin, Alaina Bradshaw, Krewson Peets, Angie DeClerck, Maxine Babcock, Cassidy Herendeen, Darlene Lombardo, Brinley Bruening, Andrea Spencer, Lilly DeMar, Breana Morrisey, Lilly Tenny, Kitty Barq, Haleigh LaRocca, Jon Spencer, Jim Spencer, Macie Janto, Dehlia Janto, Faith Schulz, Sophie Lyko, Julia Koester, Ella Stanton, Suprina, Felicity Brockhuizen, Alexendra Brockhuizen and Anna O'Donnel.

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