When you’re a kid, the pursuit of happiness is the pursuit of autographs.
In Lancaster, Blake Glass carries more than just cards. He has a pen; a plan; and now a greater purpose.
Blake is bald. He doesn’t have any hair on the rest of his body, either. Blake’s been living with Alopecia areata, a skin disease, and it hasn’t been easy.
“It’s hard because a few years back, a lot of kids made fun of me,” said Blake.
He’s a mini-star at Clipper Magazine Stadium, along with his little brother Gavin. Together, they bring in bunches of autographs. And they’re also giving away money – from Blake’s allowance.
So how much money are we talking here? Blake’s only ten years-old, so each autograph that he and Gavin get, he’ll donate a nickel to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, which is trying to find a cure.
His family has even come up with a name for his little project: Autographs 4 Alopecia. Alopecia areata affects approximately two percent of the population overall, including more than 4.7 million people in the United States alone, according to NAAF.
Younger brother Gavin thinks Blake is pretty cool for doing this, too. “Yeah, pretty much,” seven year-old Gavin told CBS 21 News Sports Director Jason Bristol.
Players think its cool, too; and not just the Barnstormers, either. Tom Pennino of Long Island recently gave the boys a bat; signed by his entire team. At first, he didn’t even know Blake’s story.
“Were you surprised to hear about they are doing with the autographs?
“Yes, it did kind of catch me by surprise,” said Pennino, a catcher who’s played in ten games in 2011. “For a kid that age going through that; it shows a lot of courage and bravery.”
Blake’s parents have even helped him start a blog
and his own Facebook page
. Before a game, though, he’s all business.
“He’s very confident,” said his father, Greg Glass. “He knows who he is. He just doesn’t have hair.”
But he did have a goal – to raise $50.
“It looks like we’re going to raise a lot more than that,” said Blake.
Yes, a lot more.
In this pursuit, never underestimate the power of a ten-year-old – one with a pen; a plan; and a purpose.