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Buzz around Jess's cut grows in Canberra community

For 10 years Jessica Turner has been building up the courage to shave her luscious, waist length curly red locks for a cause very close to her heart. 

The 26-year-old mother of two is a learn-to-swim instructor and café attendant with the YMCA NSW (the Y) and a carrier of the BRCA 1 gene. On Friday, she is participating in the World’s Greatest Shave for her mum and her family. 

“My mother is a triple negative breast cancer survivor, so raising much needed funds for cancer research is very close to my heart as I don't want others to go through what we went through,” Jessica said. 

Jess’s mum Sue was first diagnosed in 2009 with a three per cent chance of survival. Thankfully, now she is 10 years in remission, but for Jess the memories of her treatment and the anxiety around her own family’s health are ever present. 

“My younger sister and I shaved my mother’s hair was I was 15… I remember quite clearly that I wanted to do it myself right then and there, I’ve been building up the courage to do the shave since then,” she said. 

“When I was 14 weeks pregnant with my eldest, I had the BRCA test, which came back positive. I’m participating in the World’s Greatest Shave because any cause that raises money for research towards finding a cause is important to me because of my family history, and the genetic disposition that we have.” 

Jess is a learn-to-swim instructor at the Y NSW Lakeside Leisure Centre and her story has been a source of pride for her students. 

“It’s not only exciting and inspiring for my own kids, but the kids I teach. I had one 14-year-old come up to me and say you’re really brave for doing this, it’s an inspiration to have a teacher like this.” 

Jess’s family hairdresser who has been with the family every step of the way through their difficult journey with cancer will be completing the shave. All of Jess’s hair will be donated to Hair with Heart, who create wigs for children going through chemotherapy. 

WHAT: Jess to shave her waist length hair for cancer research, her son Xavier (4) will do the first chop and have his hair sprayed a bright colour 
WHEN: 9am, Friday March 13 
WHERE: Scissor and Comb Hairdressing, 3,61 Mabo boulevard Bonner, Canberra 

MEDIA: Madeleine Clarke on 0400 974 816

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