Hundreds of children at an Iranian school shaved their heads in an act of camaraderie for their physical education teacher battling cancer.
The Iranian news agency Mehr published photos of the bare-headed students together in their elementary school in Hamedan where Mohammad Reza Ghaderi is a gym teacher.
Iran students shave heads in solidarity w/ teacher suffering from cancer pic.twitter.com/Af2V94uEfr— Sobhan Hassanvand (@Hassanvand) January 14, 2015
Photos showed the children having their heads shaved; surrounding their teacher; and learning in the classroom and during outdoor gym period — nearly all with bald heads.
Mehr reported that Ghaderi, 36, is a former Iranian cycling champion who was recently diagnosed with cancer.
“I am so happy to have the pupils’ affection and love. I feel God has given me a new life,” Ghaderi told Mehr, according to Agence France-Presse.
A friend of the teacher, Majir Khezriyan, who organized the head-shaving ceremony for 300 pupils at the Ayatollah Masoumi School said, “Mohammad Reza spends the money he earns from teaching on buying balls, bicycles and sports wear for his pupils. He loves his pupils.”
“I wanted to lift his morale so I talked to the school’s officials and they welcomed the idea,” he said, according to AFP.
The French news agency also quoted Abdollah Jafari, an education official in Hamedan province who was present during the mass head shaving, who told Mehr, “They did it out of respect to a teacher and a champion.”
See the photo essay at Mehr.
Featured image via Shutterstock