Micki Fetterman left most of her hair behind when she left work May 18.
Making good on a promise to shave her head if she raised $5,000 during a two-week period, the St. Clare School emergency medical technician received a buzz cut in front of a rapt audience of students, teachers and faculty.
"You could have heard a pin drop," she said.
Fetterman, 49, had issued a challenge to the school to support her fund-raising efforts with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team in Training program.
Team in Training prepares people to participate in a marathon, triathlon or 100-mile bike ride. In return, participants raise money to help find cures for leukemia, lymphoma and other blood cancers.
A longtime marathoner whose running career was curtailed 12 years ago after she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, Fetterman joined Team in Training's cycling program last spring and is preparing to compete in the Intracoastal Waterway Century Ride in Cocoa Beach on Oct. 31.
She was inspired by two students at St. Clare, one who is battling leukemia and another who is a leukemia survivor.
"It was an opportunity for me to do something I wanted to do, that I loved to do, but be able to make a positive difference," she said.
Since her fund-raising efforts began in May, Fetterman has raised more than $9,800 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
The North Palm Beach resident also has inspired many of her students to give back to their community.
Several boys have shaved their heads, while a few girls are growing their hair for donation to Locks of Love, a not-for-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada who suffer from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis.
Fetterman, a mother of two, already had donated 12 inches of her hair to Locks of Love before shaving the rest of it off in May.