Barney paramedic 'braves the shave' to support friend's cancer fight
By Martin Paul - Senior Reporter
A DALE paramedic has “braved the shave” in support of a friend who was recently diagnosed with cancer.
It is the second time Jennifer Todd has shaved her hair off in support of a friend, having first done it in 2002 for a mate who went on to beat her fight against leukaemia.
Her latest shave, at the emergency services hub in Wilson Street on Sunday, has already raised more than £1,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support. It was done for her friend, Lisa Bevan, who was diagnosed with lymphoma about three months ago.
Ms Todd said Ms Bevan and her husband Gary, a fellow paramedic, had provided support when she had her first child who was born three months premature, weighing only 1lb 12oz.
She added: “He was poorly for a long time and I really struggled emotionally.
“The day before I found out I was pregnant with my second child, Gary and Lisa tragically lost their teenage son, Josh. Lisa was a health visitor and, despite what she had been through, she supported me both professionally and personally as a friend throughout my pregnancy and those first few months when I really needed help.
“Lisa has now been diagnosed with cancer and is currently undergoing therapy. She has lost her hair, so now it is my turn to show some support for her, which is why I have done the Brave the Shave.”
The 39-year-old added: “I am turning 40 on Thursday, so that is another reason to do something crazy.”
The paramedic, who has served the dale for about a decade, has previously done a parachute jump in aid of the British Heart Foundation and has organised several Macmillan coffee mornings.
She thanked businesses for donations towards an auction that was held during the Brave the Shave event and Darlington Charity Cup which gave £300 for her shave.
Anyone who would like to support her cause can text SHAVE 28480 to 70550 to give £5, or visit bravetheshave.macmillan.org.uk/shavers/jennifer-todd.