“This year is our fifteenth year for the Pell City Relay for Life,” said Pell City Relay for Life Chairwoman Mary Olson. “With this year our fifteenth birthday, the theme for this year’s Relay for Life is ‘Celebrating a World With More Birthdays.’”
The Pell City Relay for Life is Friday, April 30 at Pete Rich Stadium at Pell City High School. The event lasts from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m.
“We raised just over $100,000 during last year’s Relay for Life,” Olson said. “Our goal this year is $105,650.”
At Thursday’s kick-off breakfast, cancer survivor Loretta Frost shared why she participates in the Pell City Relay for Life.
“We all have reasons why we Relay,” she said. “Hardly any of us don’t know someone who has cancer (friends, family members, etc.)”
Frost said she was diagnosed with Stage II lung cancer in 2006.
“They removed my left lung and started chemo,” she said. “I am very fortunate to have a wonderful husband who was my caregiver, and very wonderful family and friends.”
Frost, who has been cancer-free for two years, said she learned about the Pell City Relay for Life through a cancer support group.
“Six months after my surgery, I was still puffing and trying to walk, and found myself on the Relay track for the survivors walk,” she said.
The Pell City Relay for Life begins with cancer survivors walking one lap around the track at Pete Rich Stadium.
“I didn’t expect to make it the whole way around the lap but I did manage it,” she said.
“It took a while but I made it.”
Frost said she has participated in the cancer survivors walk for the past three years.
“I have a lot of reasons to Relay,” she said.
“I Relay for those who lost the battle to cancer before they ever set foot on the survivors walk, for my husband, sons, and family, for other survivors, and to help anyone I can and give them hope.”
Two awards were given out at the kick-off breakfast.
The Community Volunteer of the Year 2008-2009 was awarded to Tracy Whitten.
The Multiple Team Participation Award was awarded to First Baptist Church in Pell City, who had five teams in last year’s Relay.
Olson said the funds raised each year benefit the American Cancer Society. Seventy-one cents of every dollar donated to the American Cancer Society is put towards research, education programs, advocacy efforts, or patient services and programs.
Olson said there is plenty of room for new teams to sign up and participate, as well as individuals. Relay for Life teams may only have 1-15 members.
For more information visit the Relay Web site.