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Supporters flock to help in fight

Wednesday, 3rd September, 2014

Brendan Pascoe (left) and North president Ben Victory have been instrumental in organising a huge fundraiser for the BH and District Cancer Network. Ben is undergoing a course of chemotherapy that is expected to stave off the effects of his follicular lymphoma for around 10 years. Brendan Pascoe (left) and North president Ben Victory have been instrumental in organising a huge fundraiser for the BH and District Cancer Network. Ben is undergoing a course of chemotherapy that is expected to stave off the effects of his follicular lymphoma for around 10 years.

By Darrin Manuel

It may have started as a simple show of support for a mate, but Ben Victory's head shave has quickly becomec one of the biggest fundraising events of the year.

The affable North Football Club president has received a groundswell of support after beginning a six-stage chemotherapy treatment for follicular lymphoma.

The treatment will eventually cause Ben to lose all of his hair, and his friends had noticed that he wasn't feeling comfortable with how he would soon look.

Brendan Pascoe and Justin Hoskins chatted about Ben's predicament, and decided they too would shave their heads so he would not be the odd one out.

What would come next surprised everyone involved.

"We knew he was a bit worried about losing hair, and we didn't want him to go through it alone," said Brendan.

"It was just one small thing we could do to make him feel a bit more at ease.

"I threw a text around about it and I got around twenty texts back saying 'we're in as well'.

As more and more friends and clubmates came forward to have their heads shaved, Ben decided to harness the interest to raise funds for Broken Hill and District Cancer Network.

Although he has already undergone one course of the treatment, Ben was in good spirits when he chatted with the BDT yesterday.

"I'll lose all the hair on my head, but unfortunately I won't lose any off my back and shoulders - that was the dream," he laughed.

Ben has been overwhelmed by the support shown by the community, and said he was happy to see that positive energy channelled into support for a local cancer support group.

"I always knew between my friends, family and football club that everyone was closely knit, but it sort of just blows you away," he said.

"All the messages and phone calls I've had have helped to take my mind off things, just to know everyone's thinking of you.

"And the (fundraiser) has just snowballed ... there's going to be anywhere up to 50 people taking part."

The head shave and auction will be held at the North Football Club on Saturday at 6.30pm.

Those in attendance can bid to shave a participant's head, and hairdressers from Jagged Edge and Uptown Girls will be on hand to help.

There will also be impressive door prizes including a tablet PC from Toshiba Australia, a two-litre bottle of Johnny Walker blue label donated by club patron Andrew Ryder, and a night in a deluxe spa room donated by Mick and Julie Baldwin of Red Earth Motel.

To round out the event, ABC personality Andrew Schmidt has volunteered to act as host for the night.

Anyone seeking more information or wishing to be involved can view North's facebook page online.

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