Ashley Mjor Cancer Fund gets a boost from Bremerton community
By RACHEL BRANT
Bremerton Patriot Staff writer
February 27, 2009 · Updated 10:27 AM
Electric razors buzzed and hair flew Monday afternoon at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds as 13-year-old Ashley Mjor looked on.
Fifty-four men and one woman from Washington State Patrol, Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office, Bremerton Police and other local law enforcement agencies donated money and shaved their heads in support of WSP Detective James Mjor’s daughter, Ashley, who is battling Type B non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Ashley, a Klahowya Secondary School eighth-grader, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma Dec. 18 and since then, the family has spent a lot of time at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma while Ashley undergoes chemotherapy sessions and other treatments, which are expected to last eight months.
Before the razors were turned on, KCSO Deputy Joe Hedstrom presented the Mjor family with more than $10,000, raised by the multiple agencies.
“Thank you. That’s all I can say is thank you,” James said with tears in his eyes. “Every one of you guys will have a place in our hearts — you always have and you always will.”
When Hedstrom learned about Ashley’s diagnosis, he asked the deputy sheriff’s guild for a donation for the family, but word spread and soon local law enforcement personnel had collected thousands of dollars and pledged to shave their heads.
James said the money is much appreciated and will help cover the costs of hotel stays, food and other expenses while at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital.
Ashley, who prior to her diagnosis spent a lot of time on the soccer field, kicked off the head-shaving festivities by shaving part of her father’s hair before handing the razor over to a professional.
“Awesome,” James said as Ashley shaved the first swatch of auburn hair from her dad’s head.
Shortly after James left the barber’s chair, Ashley’s grandfather, Bremerton K-9 Officer Brian Johnson, went under the razor.
“It was fun,” Ashley said of shaving her dad’s head. “I enjoyed it.”
James, who has been with WSP for nearly 10 years, said the show of support was “overwhelming.” He said he knew the law enforcement community was close knit, but he never expected anything like that.
“To see this type of support for your child, it’s overwhelming,” James said. “I just don’t know what to say.”
Ashley sat quietly and watched the barbers shave heads for nearly two hours. She also was impressed with the turnout and show of support.
“I think it’s pretty cool that they’re so many people here,” Ashley said with a smile. “I didn’t think there was going to be this many people.”
Everyone who had his or her head shaved received a hot pink bracelet with Ashley’s name on it. Hot pink is Ashley’s favorite color.
“I just want her to know that all these guys here are there for you,” KCSO Deputy Scott Jensen said to Ashley and her family. “We’re your backup.”
An account has been established at Wells Fargo for the Mjor family. Donations may be deposited into the Ashley Mjor Cancer Fund.