Kali MacDonald, youngest daughter of Tammy and Gordon MacDonald is the inspirational catalyst behind the St. Valentine’s Day Hair Massacre (Hair Massacure). Diagnosed in Sept 2000 at age 2 with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, Kali endured 3 years of chemotherapy daily.
Kali was the first child in North America to be placed on a new study where small children were dosed in adult portions with the implementation of additional chemo. This aggressive treatment was extremely hard on the children, however in Kali’s case proved to be a success.
In 2001, Kali was selected as a Miracle Child for the Stollery Children’s Hospital, and a poster child for Kids With Cancer Society. The family became very involved with the society, selecting KWC as its first chosen charity in 2003. Kali’s mom Tammy organized with a close friend, a recreational support group for cancer families. This operated for 2 years. Tammy also served on the board as a parent liaison.
In 2001, Make-A-Wish Foundation found its way into the hearts of the MacDonald family and vice versa. Kali was gifted a wish as by her request to “pet a black and white dolphin” by wish grantors Eldon and Gloria Johnson – founders of the Alberta chapter. Kali and her family were flown (compliments of West Jet) to a magical village for children with life threatening illnesses – “Give Kids the World” in Florida.
The specific wish occurred at Sea World where Kali’s unprecedented bonding session with Shamu materialized. The family was not permitted to touch the whale. Although only 3 at the time, young Kali
recalls her incredible bonding opportunity. This experience inspired the family to become closely involved with the founders of Make-A-Wish as wish granters, volunteers, fundraisers. Gordon Macdonald (Kali’s Dad) served three terms as a board member, acting as a parent liaison.
Kali’s involvement with these charities developed as she aged. At age 6, she pinked her new head of hair and shaved it off. Each year thereafter, Kali was fundraising and volunteering right alongside her family for her cause, raising awareness and thousands of dollars.