Friend’s plight touches Taj

Little Taj Stinton has raised $1300 for his friend Xander Thelan, who is battling cancer.
Little Taj Stinton has raised $1300 for his friend Xander Thelan, who is battling cancer.

Taj Stinton surprised mum Kerry when he began talking about Newton Primary School classmate Xander Thelan and how cool he looked with a shaved head, after the two met at school earlier this year.

Kerry explained that Xander was battling cancer and it wasn’t long before Taj wanted to shave his head too to support his friend.

So with the Leukaemia Foundation’s World’s Greatest Shave event now on, Kerry suggested Taj use the event to raise money for his friend.

‘We jumped online and before we knew it we had $1300 donated to Taj,’ Kerry said.

‘I get pretty emotional thinking about it. Here’s a kid who said he was going to do something to help his friend and he did exactly that.’

Kerry said the junior pair became even closer after Taj went under the shaver at South Fremantle’s Hair Venue, with Xander helping grant his friend’s wish.

‘I think the thing that really cemented the friendship was the shave,’ she said.

Xander’s mum Naomi said she was shocked by the level of support shown to her family.

‘It’s been so overwhelming to have Taj help Xander in the way he has,’ she said. ‘And to have Kerry as a friend now and also the way the school has helped out too with their donations, we couldn’t have imagined it.’

The Leukaemia Foundation’s general manager Andrew York said he hoped to raise $2.95 million in Western Australia.

The tally currently stands at $2.42 million.

Nationally, $16.6 million has been raised this year.

‘As the Leukaemia Foundation receives no ongoing government funding, the funds raised by the community and corporate sector are vital for the continuation of our free support services for families affected by blood cancer,’ he said.