MC students, faculty join in return of St. Baldrick’s


Tony DiFilippo

Sophomore Aiden Mattiello (seated left) and junior Simon Wheeler get their heads shaved at the 2022 St. Baldrick’s event on March 17.

Raising money, shaving heads, even getting pied in the face, and all for a good cause. The return of a Mount Carmel tradition.

St. Baldrick’s is an event that MC holds almost every year, usually on or around St. Patrick’s Day. Specifically, Baldrick’s is a volunteer- and donor-powered charity aiming to help young children beat cancer. It does this through donations and volunteers electing to shave their heads. MC has been holding the annual head shaving event since 2007, but they were not able to do it last year due to COVID-19.   

On Thursday, March 17, MC had a total of 34 students and faculty sign up to either have their head shaved or raise money without shaving their head. The top student fundraisers were sophomore Kevin Zanin, who raised over $2,000, freshmen Andrew and Ryan McCormick who raised about $3,000 combined, and math teacher David MIlavickas, who raised about $1,500. Other fundraisers such as sophomore Damien Resendez,  sophomore Anastasios Koutsis, and freshmen James McCormac were also big contributors. In total, the MC community combined to raise about $20,000,  a portion of which goes to the Pat Mack’s Pack foundation. Pat Mac’s Pack is a group of people dedicated to keeping the memory of Patrick Thomas McNamara alive through participation in service projects and fundraising efforts. McNamara was 13 when he died after an eleven-year battle with a brain tumor.

Zanin has been shaving his head for various other charities and for friends and family members who have been affected by cancer to show his support since he was in fifth grade, but this is only his second time participating in St. Baldrick’s. When he first got that St. Baldrick’s email, he immediately wanted to do it. “It was simple,” Zanin said. “I would never want to have a life where cancer is in it, and it’s a way for me to not only support cancer research and the children, but it’s a way for me to be put in their shoes as well.” 

Raising thousands of dollars is no easy task, especially when you may not have the biggest platform, but Zanin worked extremely hard to get his page out there for people to see. He did it through his parents’ and his own social media accounts and telling friends and family.“It wasn’t really a decision, but a goal,” Zanin noted. He also added that “raising that much money really makes me happy, and I’m super glad to be a part of the fundraiser.”

One of the most loyal and long term fundraisers to St. Baldrick’s at MC is math teacher David Milavickas. He has been participating in the annual head shaving for about five years but didn’t get the opportunity last year. Since he shaved his head for St. Baldrick’s back in 2020, he hadn’t cut his hair at all, and it had grown out into a long ponytail. 

Milavickas feels Baldrick’s is a small act contributing to a big cause. “It gives me a chance to help,” said Milavickas. “It’s the least that I can do.”

Milavickas even gave students incentives such as getting the chance to shave off the ponytail themselves. 

Another yearly shavee, theology teacher John Stimler, has been participating in shaving his head for 14 years. 

“When we shave our heads, it grows back in basically no time,” Stimler said. “Kids with cancer don’t have a choice.”

Participating in St. Baldrick’s is a small act contributing to a bigger cause. A person shaving their head may be an inconvenience or a problem to a person for a couple of months, but it could also save someone’s entire life.