#ChuckStrong: Colts Cheerleaders Go Bald for a Good Cause


Melissa John, Staff Writer

When first-year Colts coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with Leukemia in Week 4 of the NFL season, members of the organization immediately decided to take action.

Not only have the Colts raised more than $250,000, but several of the Colts players, including quarterback Andrew Luck, have already shaved their heads as a supportive gesture towards their coach’s unfortunate illness. With all of this generosity, Blue, the Indianapolis Colts’ mascot, decided to further rally some more support for the team’s coach. Via Twitter, the mascot challenged the entire Colts cheerleading squad to shave their heads in an attempt to raise money for the cause. Up for the challenge were Megan and Crystal, both brunettes with hair draping way past their shoulders.

During the third quarter of Sunday’s game on November 24, 2012 at Lucas Oil Stadium, Megan’s father held a sign high in the stands that read: “Megan…Bald is beautiful. You are ChuckStrong…Love Dad.” As the cheerleaders took the field, smiles anxiously fell on both of their faces. Blue began by shaving off a good portion of each of the cheerleaders’ locks, and a more professional hairstylist finished off the bald-do. Having kept to their word, the cheerleaders did as they said. Originally pledging to go bald if they reached $10,000 in donations, the cheerleaders exceeded their goal when they reached $22,670.50.

When asked what exactly made her jump to the occasion, Megan stated, “I’ve just had personal experiences with people who have had cancer. I’ve had mentors and family members and volunteer at Riley and met little girls who have lost their hair and beat cancer multiple times. Just seeing struggles they went through and how they could overcome that and still have confidence and fight this fight without their hair – they are really my inspiration for doing this.”

The breakthrough decision to help support Coach Pagano did not stop with Megan and Crystal. For every person who agrees to have their head shaved, Local Great Clips have decided to donate $10 to “Blue’s ChuckStrong Challenge”. With over 800 takers so far, the organization is blooming with generous and selfless volunteers who are more than willing to help contribute to an amazing cause for coach Pagano.