Friday, May 22, 2015

Why We Relay

The 2015 Relay For Life of Polk County celebration will he held May 29th starting at 6:00 P.M. at Janssen Park in Mena.  17 teams of hard working local volunteers have been raising money to be used in the fight against cancer.

Nearly every person who participates in Relay For Life has been touched by cancer in some way and has a unique and personal story to tell. It’s these stories that motivate and inspire us to celebrate, remember, and fight back against cancer. Relay For Life unites our community in an effort to find cures for cancer.

Each one of these volunteers have a story and a reason that they participate in Relay For Life.  Here are some of the reasons that local Relay For Life volunteers have for being involved.

I Relay because of my daughter Melissa.  It was such a helpless feeling for her Dad and I - not knowing what we could do to help her.  Then we learned about Relay For Life and we have been involved ever since.  Raising dollars to help find a cure for this horrible disease is our way of helping Melissa and others. -  Rhonda McKee

I Relay because of my mother in law and brother in law and several friends.  My mother in law and brother in law are survivors but I have lost two very close friends.  It is my hope that if we keep fighting we can find a cure - Terri Harrison

I Relay because I never want a parent to hear the words "your child has cancer".  At the age of 1 year 23 months my son was diagnosed with leukemia.  Cancer is an evil battle and one that needs to go away!  The American Cancer Society is the leader in research and finding cures.  I am proud to support that effort. - Charlotte Wiles

I Relay because I lost my father, brother, father in law, brother in law, and sister in law to cancer.  The loss of them was very hard, but seeing my 2 1/2 year old grand daughter have a bone marrow test and seeing her go through surgery was heart breaking.  Thanks to the Lord and the knowledge he gave doctors, she is a survivor.  I want to raise money for research so that a cure can be found and no other family has to go through what we have gone through. - Toni Tillota

I Relay for one of my best friends and co worker, Betty Johnson and for my two aunts that have passed away from colon cancer.  Relay is a great camaraderie of friends, family and co workers caring for each other. - Debbie Welch

I Relay for the fight against cancer because I have lost a lot of family member to cancer.  My favorite part of Relay For Life is when everyone comes together to raise money for the fight.  The night of Relay is the best because everyone is there for the same reason.  It feels like one big family reunion. - Jared Standridge

I started with Relay For Life because I lost my aunt to pancreatic cancer.  I want so badly to help in the fight for a cure for ALL cancer.  I am amazed that so much of every dollar goes to research.  I Relay for More Birthdays. - Brandi Sachs

I Relay to be involved in my community and for the people that aren't able to. - Samantha Rusert

My team Relays for cancer survivors and for a cure for cancer! - James Hale

I Relay for my son Traven.  We are all in this for a cure for cancer. - Carol Lane

I Relay because I care.  I want a cure. - Jacque Gallego

I am involved in Relay For Life to help find a cure for cancer.  Relay is good people working together for a cure and having fun. - George McKee

My uncle, Delbert Lawry, died from cancer a few years ago. I lost not only an uncle, but a friend and someone who was willing to help anytime. I have come to realize the importance of the work that the American Cancer Society does. It is involved in research, prevention, and helping those who are dealing with cancer.

Two years ago my Mom was diagnosed with kidney cancer.  Because of recent breakthroughs in the treatment of kidney tumors I had hope.  All of a sudden, the work that I have done with Relay For Life and the American Cancer Society came sharply into focus.  It became even more personal.  Two years after the new treatment of cryoablation my Mom is doing great.  That is why I Relay - Richard Lawry

My mother, while suffering with Leukemia, was a part of an American Cancer Society study on bone marrow transplants at the University of Colorado Medical Center. Twenty years later, my oldest sister received a bone marrow transplant that saved her life, from the same hospital. In 2000 I became involved in Relay For Life. The Relay for Life benefits every kind of cancer research and is continually in the process of saving lives and providing money for research, information on cancer, and support.

Relay For Life is what I do, who I am.  I am just a little person from a country town, but I want to do something to help my children and my grandchildren remember me the way I remember my grandmother - serving other people. - Regina Lawry

The American Cancer Society, through the fundraising efforts of volunteers like these here in Polk County along with volunteers in over 5,200 Relays in the U.S., saves lives and creates more birthdays by helping you stay well, helping you get well, finding cures and fighting back against this disease. Thanks to research funded by Relay For Life, many cancers that were once considered a death sentence can now be cured and for many more people their cancer can now be treated effectively.  Every person in Polk County who has been touched by cancer benefits from the research funded by the dedicated volunteers of Relay For Life of Polk County.

This year’s Relay For Life of Polk County will be held Friday May 29th at Janssen Park in Mena.

The opening ceremony is 6 p.m.  The Relay For Life event opens with an inspirational Survivors Lap that symbolizes the steps we are taking toward saving lives. Cancer survivors will wear purple sashes and take the first lap. The opening ceremony honors survivors and caregivers, but everyone is invited to show their support.  From that time on the object is to keep someone from each of the Relay teams on the walking track at all times until the conclusion of the event.

The community is invited come out and enjoy the evening.  Each Relay team will be fundraising with food for sale, games and entertainment.  There will be live music and activities.  After dark there will be a Luminaria Ceremony honoring those who are battling cancer and remembering those we have lost to the disease.  Lighted luminaria will line the track and the names will be read.

Relay For Life brings together 3.5 million people each year to raise much-needed funds and awareness that enable the American Cancer Society to help people stay well, help people get well, find cures, and fight back against cancer. Together with the support of the dedicated volunteers of Relay For Life of Polk County these events are making a difference.

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