Saturday, May 08, 2010


In 2005, I participated in my first Relay For Life event in H-town in California. I came in second place in raising the most money for our team. But it wasn't about me. The money I raised went for cancer research. Check out this link for more information regarding Relay For Life. The Relay monies help in the following ways:

Helping people stay well
Helping people get well
Finding cures
Fighting back

So far the Relay I am participating in has raised over $1500.00 and we still have 83 days to raise money. I think my donate page gives a good indication as to why I do this year after year after my first one in 2005, but nonetheless I'll tell you more....

Kevin Ross was a classmate of mine in high school. Nope, he wasn't someone I hung out with and would even call a friend. Hell, to be honest I didn't realize he was missing from half of my classes until he returned to school after his treatment. I remember like it was yesterday (not 20 years ago) how when he stepped on stage at graduation, the entire class stood and clapped. It was a very emotional graduation to say the least. He is doing well last time I heard.

I have three sisters who have beaten the cancer bug. Supposedly my father was a carrier of a 'cancer' gene. My oldest sister who recently beat breast cancer went through some genetic testing and that is how we found out. I like to think I am going to be the black sheep of the family and not get any form of cancer. I could go get tested to see if I have the gene, but I refuse. Primarily because I already wonder constantly if I am going to get cancer. If I went and got the test and I came back positive for that gene, I think every time I sneezed I would almost have a heart attack thinking I have cancer. Some people would want to know, but I want to live my life not worrying more than I already do.

My dad's companion (AKA: Girlfriend) of over 10 years, battled a form of cancer that would go into remission and then return. I do not know how she endured the treatments every several years. But she was a strong lady. I know because she used to kick my ass in tennis year after year.

In 2007, a coworker, Gary, was diagnosed with Cancer. He under went surgery in April and upon opening him up, realized the cancer was far worse than they thought. Immediately, I organized a Relay For Life team called Gary's Condors. Since we had so many people they made us split into two teams, but in realty we were one. We raised the most money for the cause because they made us split into two teams. I think we raised almost 4,000 dollars. But to me that night was not about the money.

The first lap of every Relay starts out with survivors walking the lap. Gary, fresh out of the hospital, may be a week, walked that lap and he led the lap. He walked many more after that before heading home. Most of our team stayed all night, taking turns walking, chatting, crying, laughing, and making a difference. Tim Graham walked the entire time we were there. And half the time it was raining, but no one went home. We had tents set up but no one used them to sleep. The energy of Relays is amazing. I can't remember what time the final lap was, but Gary's Condors had an amazing turn out including Gary leading us once again around the track. As you can tell by his webpage he lost the battle.

I walk and raise money for many reasons. But I ask you to donate because I know you know someone that has either beaten the hell out of the disease or unfortunately has gotten beaten by the disease. And the more we raise, the less people CANCER beats.

If you have made it this far in the reading, you might as well go to the site and donate. Thanks.

I reached my third goal of $700 so I bumped it up to $800. Now I am 88% away from reaching that goal.

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