Supporting local cancer patients through Relay for Life

Del Debbio

Del Debbio

Relay for Life began in 1985 when Dr. Gordy Klatt, who specialized in colorectal cancer, circled a track for more than 83 miles for 24 hours at Baker Stadium at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash.

Officials are trying to raise $50,000 this year, with $37,400 already turned in to organizers from 14 local teams raising funds for the American Cancer Society. Luminaria will be lit Friday night at 9 p.m., with a reading of names afterward. Each ceremony is created to honor those lost to cancer and bring support to those affected by that loss. "There will be food and fun to bring the community together to remember and honor our loved ones that have fought the battle against cancer". Participating teams will participate in a number of events, some of which will be in the spirit of this year's theme, O Canada. She recalled how her husband came to understand the difference Relay for Life can make after the Survivor Dinner which was held in April. The society actually has given grants to University of Wyoming and University of Colorado to find cures for aggressive forms of cancer.

There will also be a special Survivor Coffee/Tea afternoon in Newbridge Silverware with Relay Ambassador, Keith Walsh in attendance. Both survivors are now in remission, and the one who had brain cancer has since had two healthy children.

Wallach will speak Friday night.

McRedmond credits the event and her involvement with Relay for Life with helping her throughout her journey.

Participants of all ages are invited to design a vehicle that they can walk around the track in - wearing it, holding it up, or for younger participants, attaching it to a stroller or wagon. If you know anyone who's overcome cancer, feel free to invite them to join.

The funds are used to support cancer research and vital support services for people with cancer and their families. "She was diagnosed with cancer four years ago in February and she was actually pregnant at the time and it struck all of us really hard".

"In order to be able to reach that goal of curing cancer, of course it takes money and people caring and their commitment ... so yes, this is a fundraiser, but it's going for such a worthy cause, to help us reach our goal to stave off cancer", she said.

Hundreds of cancer survivors, caregivers, volunteers and teams of walkers are set to come together on Saturday for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life at OSU-OKC, 900 N Portland Ave.

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