Prayers for Kayleigh raises record funds for Hartselle Police’s No Shave November

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HARTSELLE, Ala. - No Shave November at the Hartselle Police Department always goes to a local charity or cause that resonates with some officers at the department.

"When it was time to do the campaign again, it was obvious who we wanted to support," explained Lieutenant Justin Barley with HPD.

A unanimous decision dedicated the 2016 effort to Kayleigh McClendon, the brave little girl who battled brain cancer for months.

The family was contacted shortly after learning there's nothing else doctors can do.

The officers got to work growing and fundraising, including the cops in the schools.

"I told [the kids] okay if I raise $500 dollars, I'll dye my beard purple," said Officer Michael Hudson with the school resource unit. He ultimately raised more than $1,700.

The department as a whole set a record, raised $6,387.20.

Kayleigh's fight ended mid-November, halfway through the effort.

Her parents, 'Carrow and Tim, are overcome with gratitude and positivity, because they say that's how Kayleigh was until the very end. end.

"She just chose to attack life way," said 'Carrow.

"She kept us positive," added Tim. Mr. McClendon isn't a cop but says he owes his facial hair to his involvement in Hartselle PD's No Shave November cause from last year.

"Last November we had another friend who was battling brain cancer, and he was also a police officer," he began.

He's referring to Decatur's Joshua Driggers. Hartselle joined Decatur PD for their No Shave effort for the officer who passed in March.

Mr. McClendon said he started growing it then, and when Kayleigh was diagnosed on her seventh birthday in May, he decided not to get rid of it.

Now, they have plans for the gifted money.

"At Christmastime we know there would be families here in need and we think that's a very good use of the money," said 'Carrow.

As for the officers, they are grateful to have been part of it.

"Serving doesn't always mean enforcing laws or investigating crimes, it means helping others," said Lt. Barley.

"Anyone that has anything they're going through can look at them as an example of how faith in God can get you through stuff" said Officer Hudson.