From left, Chuck Knight, newly shorn of his way-past-shoulder-length hair, laughs with his harvesters, stylist Grace Wisham and Jodi Mann, stylist/owner of Backstage salon as they pose with the hair that will be donated to locks of Love. The organization makes wigs for children who have lost hair due to illness or chemotherapy.
ALBANY, Ga. — His hair had to be rock-star length to qualify, so Chuck Knight got his last haircut Dec. 3, 2010. Until Friday that is.
Knight sat in a salon chair and laughed while stylist Jodi Mann cut two about 10-inch-long ponytails from his more than shoulder-length hair. The hair will go to Locks of Love for wigs.
“Locks of Love is a public nonprofit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada under age 21 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis,” according to its website, locksoflove.org.
Knight lost two friends — Sabrina Powell and Creed Campbell, who died this spring — to cancer. Creed would have been 8 years old last Monday.
“Creed spent one-third of his life in the hospital,” his grandmother, Jean Dunn, said, as she watched the haircutting at Backstage hair salon. “It is very special what Chuck is doing. He visited Creed a lot; he is a good friend.”
Knight started growing his hair while Creed was sick. The businessman said that the idea to honor his friends came to him while he prayed.
“Creed was one of the best young men I’ve ever known. I was inspired during my prayer time,” Knight said. “We’ve raised the money to have the wig made, so we’ll send a check along with the hair.”
Knight and his wife Debra let ceremonial balloons with snippets of hair tied to them lift into the air in the parking lot of the 1904 Dawson Road hair salon after his haircut. Was Debra sorry to see her husbands long locks go?
“I prefer Chuck’s new haircut,” she said. “I have my Chuck back.”
Knight, the owner of Knight’s Appliance and Electronics, has raised money for various charity groups, through his own initiative and through his membership in the The Exchange Club of Albany, a group dedicated to eradicating child abuse.