Head shaving for a good cause
Cancer, known as “The Emperor of All Maladies,” hit close to home for Manhasset’s Logan Panzik.
The teen recalled watching his grandfather, Harold Panzik, die from the disease in 2019. Harold’s attitude, according to Logan, was, “I’ve lived my life. It stinks that this happened,” but felt childhood cancer was an even worse fate than what he faced.
“They haven’t had a chance to live their lives,” Harold observed of young victims.
Logan decided that the best way to honor the death was continuing his efforts with the St. Baldrick’s movement, organizing fundraising head shaving events.
Traditionally held around the time of the holiday in honor of the Irish saint, St. Baldrick’s is a portmanteau of “bald” and “St. Patrick’s.” People shave their heads (or get a buzz cut) in solidarity with the many childhood cancer patients who lose their hair.
Since 2005, the St. Baldrick’s Foundation has donated more than $300 million toward pediatric cancer research and its fundraising has helped raise the five-year survival rate.
Logan Panzik has done his share in supporting this effort, beginning in 2017. Except for 2020 and 2021, when the pandemic canceled his plans, his five fundraisers have resulted in dozens of participants raising nearly $70,000 for the cause.
Plandome Haircutters again was the setting for this year’s event, held in early May.
“Lots of people are not comfortable shaving their heads,” he was told.
“No, not at all,” he replied. “This year it was harder to convince [my friends] because they’re seniors and didn’t want to shave their heads in their final year. So yes, [it took] a lot of convincing, a lot of emails, a lot of perseverance.”
One place where he admits he’s fallen short is getting his female friends—as well as his sister Shea—to shave. Only one has participated in his five years.
“That’s one of the toughest challenges I’ve ever faced,” he said.
The son of Steven and Chaz Panzik is following his brother Hunter to the U.S. Air Force Academy this June. Hunter will be starting his second year there.
Logan said he is passing the fundraiser on to a couple of his younger friends who will continue his efforts.
The barbers offering their services were Michael Rizzo, Debbie Lackner, Reinaldo Loureiro and Eddie Siza.
Donate at www.stbaldricks.org/events/manhasset.