Dedra Copeland has a special incentive to serve as a co-chair of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Third Annual Light the Night Walk in Lawrence.
Copeland, 52, has multiple myeloma, a form of blood cancer that's related to leukemia.
"I just found out yesterday that my cancer has come back, and I'm going to have to start another round of treatment," said Copeland, a Lawrence piano teacher. "I've had two bone marrow treatments already."
The Light the Night Walk, a nationwide fund-raising event that commemorates lives touched by cancer, will be held Friday at South Park, south of downtown.
Registration to participate in the walk around the park will start at 6 p.m. The walk will begin at 7 p.m. and take 30 to 45 minutes.
A pre-and post-walk celebration will also be held, featuring entertainment and refreshments.
Individual walkers are welcome, and families and companies are invited to form teams to walk in the event.
There's no registration fee, but those who raise $25 or more will carry one of the society's illuminated red or white balloons.
Dedication banners will be displayed to give participants an opportunity to place a name or message in honor or memory of a loved one with cancer.
In 2000, the Society's Light the Night Walk raised $8.5 million nationwide.
Copeland hopes to see a good turnout for this year's walk.
"My heart is really in this, because we need to raise funds for research," she said. "The more we can raise for research, the more help there will be for people."
Copeland would like to participate in the walk, but needs a wheelchair in order to take part. If you can help Copeland obtain a wheelchair to use, contact her at 843-7614.
For more information about the Lawrence walk, contact the Kansas Chapter of the Lymphoma and Leukemia Society -- based in Wichita -- at (800) 779-2417.
-- Staff writer Jim Baker can be reached at 832-7173.