Archive for Wednesday, June 21, 2000

2nd annual relay a real success story


June 21, 2000

It is touching that so many people in Tonganoxie worked on this year's Relay for Life.

Although the 12-hour benefit for the American Cancer Society didn't raise as much money as organizers would have liked, the second annual event served again to raise awareness about cancer. The start of the 2000 relay originally was scheduled for May 12, fewer than 24 hours after a tornado passed through Tonganoxie. The organizers, rightly so, decided to postpone the relay. They say it cost them some funding.

Last year's relay raised more than $26,500, while this year's event in Reusch Memorial VFW Park raised more than $19,000.

But still, the relay serves another purpose: To help all of us pause and think about those people we know and have known who have developed cancer.

One in three Americans will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, according to the American Cancer Society.

The relay provides an opportunity for those of us who are cancer survivors, for those of us who have cancer and for those of us who are touched in some way by cancer to join the fight against the disease.

Relay for Life traces its roots back to 1985, when a Tacoma, Wash., surgeon and volunteer for the American Cancer Society ran and walked on a track for 24 hours by himself. He raised $27,000 to battle cancer. Across the nation, the 2000 event is projected to raise more than $150 million in nearly 2,800 communities.

It is heartening that so many local volunteers organized, participated and donated their time, money and energy to this important event.

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