Yep, that's the same young man - before and after. (Source: Family of Tuffy Cutrer)
Phillip Cutrer thinks his son will succeed if he puts into life even half as much effort as he put into growing his hair for three years. (Source: KSLA News 12)
A Sabine Parish youth just got his first haircut in three years.
His journey to that point is a lesson in dedication to helping others.
The Converse 11-year-old's hair grew longer as he endured three Louisiana summers.
The young pitcher's locks lengthened through three baseball seasons.
Despite taunts by classmates and others, Tuffy Cutrer didn't cave to jabs that he looked more like a little girl than a boy.
Instead, what began as a personal competition evolved into a quest to help others.
"Whenever I was 8, I seen (the) Little League World Series. And I told Mom I want to grow my hair to be like them so I could be better than them," Tuffy said.
Then one night a few months later, he and his family happened to watch a commercial for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
"Next morning, he gets up and he's like, 'Mom, you know what?' I said, 'What?' He said, 'I think I'm going to grow my hair out and then give it to those kids on TV that don't have any hair'." Ashley Cutrer recalled.
Time passed. His hair grew longer.
And Tuffy got through it with the support of his best friend.
"Kids would pick on me at school, and he would always have my back."
His best friend and occasional catcher is Branton "Boogey" Preston.
"They'd go up to him and they'd say, 'Tuffy, you look like a little girl. You really need to cut your hair'," "Boogey" said. "And he's like, 'Just leave me alone.'
"And then I would go over there. I would say, 'He's just minding his own business. Leave him alone.'
"And then they would pop off again. Then we'd have to hit him."
Then haircut day came just days ago.
Tuffy's coach and Dad, Phillip Cutrer, captured the moment with a couple Facebook Live posts.