Firefighters shave heads to support teen colleague
Jacob Hawthorne was diagnosed with stage four Hodgkin lymphoma; firefighters surprised him with the kind gesture during his 17th birthday party
SILVER SPRING, Pa. — It's all about the brotherhood.
When a young volunteer firefighter battling cancer lost his hair, his colleagues wanted to let him know he was not alone. A few close shaves later, there are about a dozen members of West Hempfield Fire/Rescue in Silver Spring, Pennsylvania, sporting smooth scalps in honor of Jacob Hawthorne, who was surprised with the kind gesture during his 17th birthday party.
"It broke my heart ... in a good way," Amy Hawthorne, Jacob's mom, told TODAY Parents. "To see that they were supporting Jacob that much to go ahead and shave their heads for him." The fire company has been such a passion for Jacob that he began volunteering at 14. He is a very familiar figure at the station, where he spends much of his free time alongside the other volunteers, training, responding to emergencies and taking care of chores, added Tara Ney, membership secretary for the group.