Gerdie McKenna has the best friends any girl could ever ask for in life. After hearing of their friend’s breast cancer diagnosis, Gerdie McKenna’s closest girlfriends decided they wanted to show their amazing friend that she was not alone in her journey to recovery.
They enlisted the help of South Africa portrait photographer, Albert Bredenhann, to help plan a special friendship photo.They took this thoughtful gesture one step further when the gals collectively decided to surprise Gerdi by voluntarily shaving their heads per Metro.
It all started about a month ago, when the group of friends got in touch with Bredenhann and asked if he would take part in this friendship photograph. He agreed to the request and proceeded to call each of the ladies individually and ask if they would consider shaving their heads the morning of the photo.
Without much hesitation, about every single one agreed to the idea.
On Sunday, February 24, eleven of Gerdi’s closest friends showed up at the hair salon at 8 a.m. sharp and had their heads shaved in honor of their dear friend.
Bredenhann, took many photos throughout the day of the selfless women who whole-heartedly stepped up to meet this challenge, as they knew how much it would mean to their friend. Gerdi’s mom and two sisters also joined the group in ridding themselves of the mass of thin fibers that grew on their heads and had come to mean so much to them over the years. All of their hair was graciously donated to CANSA (Cancer Association of South Africa).
“I learned one thing this morning and that is that hair is but a small part of you,” one woman said after shaving her head.
The best part of all came at the big reveal when the girls threw Gerdi a party and surprised her with their new “hair cuts”. As one can imagine, it was very emotional as Gerdi was deeply moved by her friends remarkable show of support and solidarity.
For Bredenhann, the whole experience proved much more gratifying than he could have ever dreamed or imagined.
“It was an honor as photographer to capture these memories forever,” he said. “I never thought being a photographer could be so satisfying and rewarding. As portrait photographers, we should always remember that we are working with people, feelings and emotions.”
“Good Friends are like stars. You don’t always see them, but you know they’re always there.” Thank you Gerdi and company for tugging at our heart-strings and reminding us of all that is good in this world.