Despite receiving a dousing, this year’s Relay for Life participants stuck it out for the 24-hour event held May 22 and 23 at North Rockford Middle School. With money still being counted, by the end of the event, the total for Relay 2010 stood at $340,000, even higher than last year’s tally at that time.
With the rain failing to dampen enthusiasm for this, the eighth-annual Relay in Rockford participants enjoyed the around-the-clock activities. Each team is asked to have a representative on the track at all times during the event. Because cancer never sleeps, Relays are overnight events up to 24 hours in length. Twenty-four-hour walkers, such as Jason Cavner, in his fourth year doing the long walk, said hot weather is the worst. He walks for his uncle, who is fighting cancer.
Eighty-one teams participated, and the top three in fund raising were Terminatin’ Cancer, Friends for Life and Desperate Housewives.
Five Relay awards were given. Pam Jacobs of Team Coo, Sloan Ouellette, age 16, of team Kids Care Too, Carson Banfield, age 10, of Kids Care Too, Lisa Morgan, of Braced for a Cure and Abby Larva, of the Spartan Striders, were all recognized for their efforts.
Highest individual fund raiser was Nikki Butinsack with $10,800.
Organizer Carol Delp-Kurzeja said, “Ideally, our children should not have to worry about chemotherapy, radiation and tumor removal surgeries. Prevention of the disease is the long-term objective, but we’ll certainly take a cure after the diagnosis. Right now, we simply want cancer survivors to have many more birthdays ahead of them.”
“So far, we have accomplished that objective. Now, with the community’s help, we can achieve our ultimate goal of eliminating cancer from our vocabulary.”
The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against the disease.