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9-year-old cuts, donates hair for cancer patients

Posted: December 28, 2011 - 1:04am  |  Updated: December 28, 2011 - 4:19am
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McKenna Key, 9, of Evans, with her hairstylist Sherry Summers after having her hair cut Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011, at Split Ends salon in Martinez. She donated the hair to Pantene's Beautiful Lengths program, which uses the hair to make wigs for cancer patients.  Photo By Valerie Rowell
Photo By Valerie Rowell
McKenna Key, 9, of Evans, with her hairstylist Sherry Summers after having her hair cut Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011, at Split Ends salon in Martinez. She donated the hair to Pantene's Beautiful Lengths program, which uses the hair to make wigs for cancer patients.

Twitter @ValerieRowell

McKenna Key spent three years letting her silky blond hair grow out.Last week, the 9-year-old from Evans had her tresses cut so someone else could enjoy them.

She donated 9.5 inches of her hair to Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths program. Pantene partners with the American Cancer Society to make wigs for cancer patients.

McKenna’s mother, Marlo Key, said she showed McKenna a magazine article about a similar program, and her then 6-year-old liked the idea of growing and giving her hair to someone in need.

“It was getting in the way, but I didn’t want to cut it so quickly, so I just decided to do it,” McKenna said.

She was excited about the hair cut at Split Ends salon in Martinez because the long hair often got in the way of McKenna’s active lifestyle, including sports and swimming.

“It’s tangly,” she said.

Stylist Sherry Summers pulled McKenna’s hair into a ponytail and smoothly cut it into a bob even with McKenna’s chin.

McKenna just grinned at the mirror and enjoyed the wash, dry and style that came after the cut.

Her family was on hand to witness her donation, including her father, David; brother, Dalton; and, grandmother, Cyndi Harrell.

“We are very proud of you,” Harrell told her granddaughter. “You look like a teen-ager now.”

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