Hair can be one of the biggest signifiers of our personality. While we may not always think about it that way, whether you decide to go curly, straight, blonde, or blue, your hair style says something about you.
But unlike the rest of us, for Thomas Moore of Washington, Maryland, his hair holds a little bit more meaning. At the young age of 10 years old, Moore set out on a mission to help a child with cancer “feel happy” by growing out his hair to later donate. And he did just that. For nearly three years.
According to Scary Mommy, Moore was inspired to grow out his hair after he saw his mom, Angie Pulos, watching a video of a little girl who was battling pediatric cancer. The little girl in the video, Kyssi Andrews, was bald due to her chemotherapy treatment. This prompted a conversation between Moore and his mother about the realities of cancer and cancer treatments.
Instantly, Moore wanted to help and came up with the idea all by himself to grow and donate his hair to 5-year-old Andrews.
The journey has not been an easy one. According to Moore’s aunt Amber Lynn Ray, once Moore’s hair got too long to manage, he needed to get cornrows. “It started off just fine when his hair was shorter,” Ray told Buzzfeed. “But as the afro grew, they had to cornrow it to keep it nice and tame,” which Moore was not a fan of. Ray described Moore as “extremely tender-headed,” so getting the tight braids done hurt his scalp.
Ray goes on to explain that Moore contemplated quitting several times over the past two years, but each time “they had to re-focus on the reason for growing.”
Unfortunately, Andrews, the little girl Moore wanted to donate his hair to, lost her battle with cancer and passed away in June 2015. But Moore did not give up on his goal. He continued to grow out his hair for a total of two years and five months before he deemed it long enough to donate, according to a NowThis video on the subject.
But Moore’s efforts have not gone unnoticed. Hearing of Moore’s act of kindness, Andrews’ mom expressed her appreciation on Facebook. “To know that my sweet ANGEL Kyssi is still an inspiration,” she wrote, “even in her absence from the earth makes me one PROUD mom. Her LEGACY lives.”
Moore’s kind-hearted deed has also been recognized from people around the world, as his aunt Amber Lynn tweeted about the much awaited haircut and has received 120K likes and 62K retweets in just over a week.
Accompanied by a before and after picture, Ray documented the infamous moment when Moore, along with his mom and siblings, headed to the barber for a new do.
In a truly beautiful act, Moore donated enough hair to make three wigs for kids with cancer.
“I feel like I can move my head faster now,” Moore says of his new hairstyle.
His mom also adds, “His friends think what he’s done is pretty cool. Thomas said he’s glad his hair doesn’t get caught in the bushes when he plays outside anymore.”
And in addition to being able to play outside afro-free, Moore will also be making an appearance at a gala in October, where he will be accepting an Act of Kindness Award from The Derek Anderson Foundation.
As for what’s next for little Moore’s head? Well, he says he wants to grow it out again in sixth grade. According to NowThis, Moore is going to enjoy his short hair for a little while “because I want to spend the rest of fifth grade with this hairstyle,” he explained. “Yeah, I just want a year off.”
Totally understandable, Thomas. And we’ll all be keeping an eye out for your next legendary fro.