Hundreds of Massachusetts’ finest are looking clean cut once again, after going hairy for “No-Shave November” in support of Home Base. On November 30, Fenway Park was the home of a ceremonial shave-off as police officers from across the Bay State – including Ayer and as far away as Easthampton – said goodbye to their mustaches, goatees, and beards.
It was all part of the 3rd annual fundraiser, which to date, has raised more than $125K to support mental health and brain injury care at Home Base – $25K over the original goal. Typically, police officers are not allowed to grow facial hair, but this year, chiefs from across 62 cities and towns allowed their departments to participate in the campaign, spearheaded by MBTA Transit Officer, Purple Heart recipient, and former Home Base patient Kurt Power.
“Throughout the month, these first responders grew out their beards to show support for our troops and raise awareness to post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury,” said Kurt Power. “Home Base is the tip of the spear as far as helping Veterans overcome the invisible wounds of war. It was so life-changing for me that I felt there was an obligation to get the word out and support the cause that is legitimately changing and saving lives on a daily basis.”
Boston Red Sox President Sam Kennedy welcomed the group of first responders to Fenway and thanked them for their support. “For those us that get to work in the toy department of life – professional sports – please know how humbling it is to stand before you guys, who give so much to all of us. In my estimation, the most important initiative we have launched here with the Red Sox Foundation is Home Base, and the fact that you chose to support No-Shave November is really meaningful and impactful.”
“We all had a good time – we have 32 guys from my departments participate and raise $3,200, which is great,” said Lt. Scott Stallbaum who helped organize the Everett Police Department’s participation in No-Shave November. “It’s an opportunity for us to come back and support our Veterans as we are supported by our community.”
“We are hopeful that events like today – and the media being here – is going to reach a Veteran out there who is suffering and needs some help. They are going to step up and make that first call, and Home Base will be there to answer that call,” said Supt. Richard Sullivan of the MBTA Transit Police. “No-Shave November is going to be a yearly event. As long as Home Base is in existence, we will do this.”