Slaton teacher’s aide praising student after act of kindness

KCBD Evening Newscast 6 p.m. girl donates hair 10/08/2019

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - An area teacher in a battle with cancer is praising an act of kindness by one of her students.

Melody Harbour has been with Slaton ISD for four years. She currently works as an aide for special education first and second graders at Cathelene Thomas Elementary School. In April 2019, Harbour was diagnosed with stage three lung cancer. She said she went through 30 rounds of radiation and four chemotherapy over the summer. And when the new school year started, one of her students did something extraordinary for her.

“I was really embarrassed to come to school because I was afraid, I would scare the kids because I didn’t have any hair,” said Harbour.

But she says everyone has been nothing but kind to her during her battle.

“They (students) ask me how I’m doing. They come up and hug me,” said Harbour, “I haven’t asked any questions other than how are you feeling? It’s--they teach kindness at this school. And this is kind.”

Third-grader, Sophia Alvarado, saw that Harbour’s hair was gone and wanted to do something about it.

“When I was like in second grade, I saw her. She said, she said that she was with cancer,” said Alvarado, “And then last time I saw her, she had no hair and then we cut my hair and I decided to give it to her.”

Sophia’s mom braided and cut Sophia’s hair. They put the long braided and cut hair into a box and gave it to Harbour.

“After school, I was still in the room waiting to go home, somebody came to the room to get me in tell me that someone wanted to see me in the office. And it was Sophia and her mom. And she had cut her hair for me,” said Harbour.

Harbour said her students give her strength to get through this battle.

“This little girl is why I have to do this every day. There's a lot of them in there,” Harbour said pointing at the school. “I can't just sit at home and dwell on my problems, I have to have a reason to get up and do something every day. And if I didn't have the school, this is my family. If I didn't have them to get up and go to school every day and be with the kids and be with people, I probably wouldn't be here right now. So, this just keeps me going.”

Melody is still battling lung cancer. She’s currently undergoing immunotherapy treatments but may have to complete more chemotherapy treatments depending on how her body responds to the current treatments.

Sophia and Melody plan on donating the hair to someone who needs it. KCBD will update this story once they decide where to donate it.

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