Overnight Relay for Life aims to raise $80K locally for cancer fight

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Several speakers shared their experiences battling cancer, and coming out a survivor. He's been affected by cancer through his grandfather, uncle, employer and even his dog, all of whom had the disease.

Wellington first got involved in 2006 through her job at Lambton Public Health, where she worked to prevent tobacco use among youth.

Michelle Hart is no stranger to Relay for Life.

Last year, 2.7 million participants in the USA raised more than $279 million at more than 3,500 events to help the American Cancer Society attack cancer in dozens of ways, each of them critical to achieving a world without cancer - from developing breakthrough therapies to building supportive communities, from providing empowering resources to deploying activists to raise awareness. "Not only the survivor or the person going through cancer, but also the caregivers", said Eric Witham, Relay For Life logistics event chair.

"You think you know your body and everything about yourself". The event raises money for the American Cancer Society, as they work to find a cure.

"We had about 300 participants past year, said O'Rourke".

Friday was a special day in Great Bend for many people as the Barton County Relay For Life Event got underway at Veterans Memorial Park. "I got my pledge in, then I'd walk". It means we need to be united.

Life, he said, was little more than a blur for the next 15 months as he went through radiation and chemotherapy treatments. "Last year was the fifth year and we have raised over $80,000". The first lap was walked by cancer survivors. It's always been very emotional to watch that survivor lap.

"Newtown has such a wonderful and supportive close-knit community of survivors and caregivers", he said.

"I believe that they're helping us".

Survivors stand out among other participants by wearing signature purple shirts.

One of the region's top fundraising Relay for Life events to benefit the American Cancer Society will be held Friday at the Yorktown Community and Cultural Center on Veterans Road. I have made some of the best friendships because of Relay. "I went to Relay and carried on as if nothing was going on". That same track turns into a living memorial of lighted luminary bags, bearing the names of loved ones who are encouraged to fight on or bags reminding us of our friends that lost their battle.

The annual fund- and awareness-raising activity is set to begin at 5 pm on Saturday, June 16, at Newtown High School - and will conclude 12 hours later, as the sun begins making its way toward the horizon on Father's Day morning.