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Tress-less for a cause

Lynn BurtonStaff Writer

Ariana Buxman, 7, spent the last two years growing her hair long so she could give it away to another little girl she doesn’t even know.Ariana’s curly, thick, blonde locks were cut by cosmetologist Kelly Warner at Cyber Salon & Day Spa Tuesday afternoon.The hair, in a 10-inch ponytail, will now be shipped to the nonprofit group Locks of Love. It will be made into a wig for a financially disadvantaged child under 18 who has lost her hair due to a medical condition.Children comprise over 80 percent of the donors, making this a charity where children have the opportunity to help other children, according to the Locks for Love website.Ariana is the daughter of John and Regina Buxman of Glenwood Springs, and is a student at Sopris Elementary School. Ariana has a big, friendly smile. She’s composed, and handles newspaper interviews like she’s done them a time or two before.For example, ask Ariana if she likes Sopris Elementary School, and she quickly says, “I love it.”Mention that it will be cooler this summer not having long hair well past her shoulders, and she picks up the gist and replies, “Usually, when I got out to play, it gets really hot.”Regina Buxman said Tuesday’s haircut had its origins two years ago. She and her daughter were watching a television commercial for Children’s Hospital that featured a little girl who lost her hair due to medical treatments. Questions from Ariana followed quickly.”I asked my mom what the little girl would do, going to school with no hair,” Ariana said.Regina explained that the girl might wear a cap, a hat or a wig. That answer prompted other questions, such as where the hair for a wig would come from.Then came the question that set everything in motion. “What if I wanted to grow my hair to give it away?” Ariana asked.”You could do that,” her mom told her.Regina mentioned the idea to someone at Cyber Salon, who told her about Locks of Love.Regina said that her daughter’s hair had always been shorter, in part so it wouldn’t ice up and get stuck in her hockey and skiing helmet.As the months went by, Ariana stuck with her goal of growing her hair long enough so that she could donate it to another girl. “She was really motivated,” Regina said.There were a few laughs along the way, including one involving a family friend who shaves his head.”She offered to give him her hair,” Regina said with a laugh.Tuesday’s haircut was a two-step process. First, Warner wetted Ariana’s hair and combed it out. Then it was over to another chair at the salon, where Warner tied Ariana’s wet hair in a ponytail, rolled a rubber band up 10 inches from the bottom, then gave it a snip.Ariana wrote a letter that she hopes will make its way to the girl who will wear the wig made from her hair. The letter was carefully written on wide-lined, elementary school stationery.Waiting for her haircut in a reception area chair, Regina handed her daughter the letter, which she flawlessly read aloud:”Dear Friend,” she read. “I am sorry you are sick. But gust remember that you are loseing your hair not because you are sick but because you triing to get better.”I have been growing my hair for you for 2 years. Its fineily redy! Now we can be twins!”I love playing with my brother, Stefan, sking and ice hocky. If you come to visit me my big black lab Zeus will slime you! He’s a nut!!! Love Ariana.”


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