Relay for Life nets $50,000 for fight against cancer

Posted April 30, 2014 at 1:24 pm



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Above, Cancer survivors stood at mid-court and watched as caregivers of cancer patients, as well as family members who have lost someone to cancer, make a lap around the gym floor Friday night at the Relay for Life event.

At right, one of the booths at this year’s Relay for Life event was hosted by the Clinton County High School Cheerleaders. Cheerleader MaKayla Brown painted the fingernails of Holden Thrasher. The booth also offered face painting and a bouncy house.

The 2014 Clinton County Relay For Life program is in the books, and although the overall numbers were down from previous record-setting years, the signature event to help raise money for the American Cancer Society was still successful in the amount of funds collected.

When all was said and done and the work complete, some $50,000 had been raised in Clinton County, according to Lisa Smith, Public Relations Coordinator for the local Relay For Life.

Even though the bottom line total was below the $72,000 raised a year ago, it is still a significant amount of revenue for an area and population of Albany and Clinton County.

Smith also noted that the $50,000 total was preliminary as final totals were still being calculated as of press time and an official amount, as well as team totals, will be published next week.

Clinton County is also in a new area, that being the Mid-South Division, and Adam Smedberg is currently the Relay For Life Specialist and will be the person the local committee will be working with throughout the upcoming year.

The annual Relay For Life was held at the Clinton County High School gymnasium last Friday, April 25. This year’s program was reduced in time, going from 6 p.m. to 12 midnight. But there was plenty of time for fun, fellowship and most of all, tributes to cancer victims and those who have survived the disease that has affected some many lives and families not only nationwide, but locally.

The theme for this year’s Relay was “The Cure Commanders.”

The program began with the annual “survivor lap” where local cancer survivors took the first lap around the track. This year, a total of 33 cancer survivors were on hand, practically the same number as a year ago.

A total of eight Relay teams also participated in events throughout the night.

The program included the luminaries ceremonies at 9 p.m., with the closing ceremonies at 11 a.m.

Overall participation among teams and volunteers was down from years past and this year, for the first time, Clinton County was placed in the Bowling Green area of the state’s American Cancer Society’s relay efforts, which may have taken a little time for the adjustment in personnel that local volunteers are used to working with.

Also, a continued poor economy, coupled with an extremely harsher than usual winter that kept many people away from Relay For Life planning meetings early in the year, were contributing factors to the lower numbers in 2014.

Smith and other local volunteers hope next year will be better, possibly with an earlier start in planning, getting more sponsors and volunteers, among other factors.

Smith and all of the Relay For Life volunteers, team leaders, etc. are appreciative to the community and those who helped support the efforts to raise money to fight cancer in any way and are looking forward to a much more successful year in 2015.

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The American Cancer Society Relay For Life movement is the world’s largest fundraising event to end cancer, uniting communities across the globe to finish the fight. Dollars raised by more than four million Relay participants in 25 countries help the American Cancer Society save lives by supporting education and prevention efforts, funding groundbreaking cancer research, and providing free information and services for people with cancer who need them. The following are just some of the ways you’re helping the Society finish the fight:

* In 2013, we gave cancer patients more than 380,000 rides to and from treatment or medical appointments.

* In 2013, we fulfilled nearly one million requests for cancer information via the phone, mail, and online chats.

* In 2013, we saved patient’s more than $38 million in lodging costs by providing a free place to stay when they had to travel for treatment.

* In 2013, we granted $31.8 million to the ACS Cancer Action Network to ensure lawmakers make cancer a top national priority.

* We’ve marked a 20 percent decline in cancer death rates since 1991…that means more than 1.3 million lives saved.

* Since 1946, we’ve invested more than $4 billion in cancer research that has helped confirm the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, establish the link between obesity and multiple cancers, and develop drugs to treat leukemia and advanced breast cancer, among many other breakthroughs.

* Our work has contributed to a 50 percent drop in smoking since 1965, which in turn has led to an overall drop in lunch cancer death rates.

* Every year, more than four million people come together at Relay For Life events around the world to support the American Cancer Society and help finish the fight against cancer!

* In 2013, we helped more than 45 million visitors to our website, cancer.org, get the cancer information and support they needed.

For more information about Relay For Life, visit RelayForLife.org or call 1-800-227-2345.