Thursday, December 8 , 2016, 1:14 am | A Few Clouds 47º

 
 
 
 

Local News

Firefighters Shave Heads in Solidarity with Fellow Firefighter Battling Cancer

The community rallies around Kevin Corbett and his family to help with expenses as he undergoes treatment for testicular cancer

Clippers were buzzing on Friday morning as shorn locks littered the hallway floor of Santa Barbara Fire Station One on Carrillo Street.

Firefighters wandered into the hallway between shifts and other duties, taking a seat beneath a black smock, and Paul Mitchell School students shaved their heads.

One by one, each sent a message of support to fellow city firefighter Kevin Corbett, who has been undergoing radical treatment since he discovered he had testicular cancer just last month.

"We're his brothers, and we love and support him," said Capt. Kevin Bryant, who helped organize Friday's event. "Everybody loves Kevin."

The community has rallied around Corbett, his wife, Lisa, and their three children, and a poker tournament fundraiser held Sunday drew more than 300 people and raised more than $15,000 for the Corbetts to help pay for costs not covered by insurance.

Paul Mitchell students were on hand Friday to shave the heads of those who came through, and United Blood Services were also at the station as dozens of people volunteered to give blood.

Engineer Jack Franklin, an EMT who was celebrated in 2012 for saving the life of Timorie Millender, was one of those who came in on Friday.

His teenage daughter, Tori, came with him on Friday morning to watch her dad get his head shaved. She urged him to shave off his trademark mustache as well, but Franklin was firm on that point.

"That's not going to happen," he said.

shave heads
EdEEd Fuentes of the M ontecito Fire Protection District gets his head shaved Friday by Paul Mitchell School's Justin Marrs. (Lara Cooper / Noozhawk photo)

Franklin was more than happy to shave his head in solidarity with Corbett, however.

"This is a second family to all of us," he said of the city fire department.

Even though the event wasn't advertised, firefighters from other agencies also came out to show their support for Corbett.

Montecito Fire Protection District engineer Ed Fuentes also sat under a black smock as Paul Mitchell's Justin Marrs shaved Fuentes' head.

He said he was there to show solidarity with Corbett, even though Fuentes didn't know him personally.

Bryant, who has been the liaison between Corbett's family and the department, met Corbett while he was working as a responding officer for the Santa Barbara Police Department. The pair would respond to incidents downtown, Bryant as a freighter and Corbett as an officer, and forged a friendship.

When Corbett began to work for city fire, he was stationed for a time at Station Four on Ontare Road, where Bryant was his supervisor.

Bryant has a medical background and is a registered nurse, and recalled when Corbett called him to tell him about his cancer diagnosis.

"He shared with me how the events unfolded and asked if I would support him," Bryant said. "Of course I said I would be there for him."

Bryant said Corbett has a great support network, between the family and the department.

"One of the things he asked me was, 'Does anybody care?'" Bryant recalled. "I had to explain to him that I couldn't keep my phone charged because of all the calls and texts I was getting from people concerned about him."

Donations to Corbett's support fund can be made by clicking here.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk's intent is not to limit the discussion of our stories but to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and must be free of profanity and abusive language and attacks.

By posting on Noozhawk, you:

» Agree to be respectful. Noozhawk encourages intelligent and impassioned discussion and debate, but now has a zero-tolerance policy for those who cannot express their opinions in a civil manner.

» Agree not to use Noozhawk’s forums for personal attacks. This includes any sort of personal attack — including, but not limited to, the people in our stories, the journalists who create these stories, fellow readers who comment on our stories, or anyone else in our community.

» Agree not to post on Noozhawk any comments that can be construed as libelous, defamatory, obscene, profane, vulgar, harmful, threatening, tortious, harassing, abusive, hateful, sexist, racially or ethnically objectionable, or that are invasive of another’s privacy.

» Agree not to post in a manner than emulates, purports or pretends to be someone else. Under no circumstances are readers posting to Noozhawk to knowingly use the name or identity of another person, whether that is another reader on this site, a public figure, celebrity, elected official or fictitious character. This also means readers will not knowingly give out any personal information of other members of these forums.

» Agree not to solicit others. You agree you will not use Noozhawk’s forums to solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites, without Noozhawk’s express written approval.

Noozhawk’s management and editors, in our sole discretion, retain the right to remove individual posts or to revoke the access privileges of anyone who we believe has violated any of these terms or any other term of this agreement; however, we are under no obligation to do so.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.



Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >