A Georgia boy gave his friend a Christmas gift that was two years in the making.
Tyler Boone, 10, patiently spent two years growing out his hair to give to a friend who has none, reports Huffington Post.
Tyler’s friend Gabby Ruiz, 12, has a condition called alopecia, which causes hair loss, and Tylers’s mane will be made into a wig especially for her. “I just want to make her happy,” he said to WFTS in Tampa Bay, Florida.
Alopecia causes hair to fall out in round patches, explains the American Academy of Dermatology, which summarizes the condition as follows:
The hair can fall out on the scalp and elsewhere on the body. Not everyone loses all of the hair on the scalp or body. This happens to about 5 percent of people. Hair often grows back but may fall out again. Sometimes the hair loss lasts for many years. Alopecia is not contagious. It is not due to nerves. What happens is that the immune system attacks the hair follicles (structures that contain the roots of the hair), causing hair loss. This disease most often occurs in otherwise healthy people.
Though Tyler and Gabby live hundreds of miles apart, they have remained close friends after meeting years ago.
On Dec. 29, they gathered with their families at a J. C. Penney store in Brandon, Florida for a photo shoot, during which Gabby cut off 12 inches of Tyler’s hair, reported WFTS.
The nonprofit organization Children With Hair Loss plans to have the hair turned into a wig at no cost.
Tyler was praised on social media after the story was posted on the WFTS Facebook page. “This is so sweet, I am so happy when I hear stories like these,” one person commented. Another chimed in: “What a beautiful heart this boy has.”
Gabby agrees that Tyler is “a great person,” calling his hair-donating gesture “amazing.”