Southern California Coast Guardsmen raise money for cancer research in Ventura Harbor

VENTURA, Calif. – Multiple Southern California Coast Guardsmen volunteered their time, their hair and raised money to benefit a worthy cause for the National St. Baldrick’s Charity Event, Saturday, in Ventura Harbor.

Crew-members from Coast Guard Station Channel Islands Harbor, Marine Safety Detachment Santa Barbara, and several Coast Guard Auxiliarists and volunteers, came together Saturday to shave their heads in an emotional show of solidarity to benefit children’s cancer research.

In its ten years of existence, The St. Baldrick’s Foundation has become the world’s largest volunteer-driven fundraising program for childhood cancer research.

Over 20 Coast Guard Reservists, Auxiliarists and Active-Duty members raised over $4,500.00 for the charity. Among “Team Coast Guard” was Chief Petty Officer Kevin L. Bentle, Executive Petty Officer of Station Channel Islands.

Bentle said, “Shaving their heads is their way to show the station’s commitment to the community as a whole and show them that they support the cause.”

“We joined the service to save lives and help people in distress,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Malia R. Chasteen. “This is our way of helping support our community in the fight for the cure of cancer.”

“We at the station are very aware of the cancer curse,” “I lost my uncle to cancer,” said Seaman Tim Suraci.

Coast Guard Auxiliarist Tom Shaw’s brother, succumbed to cancer and his son is currently being treated for cancer. One way or another, we’ve all lost somebody to cancer,” said Shaw.

Chief Petty Officer Mark G. Jimenez, stationed at Marine Safety Detachment Santa Barbara, explained that his personal purpose for shaving his head was simply to raise awareness.

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