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Archive for Saturday, June 9, 2007

A Relay for Life, a relay for hope

Cancer survivors take ceremonial lap at fundraiser

The crowd applauds cancer survivors as they make their way around the track to open the American Cancer Society's Douglas County Relay For Life. The relay started at 7 p.m. Friday and ends at 7 this morning. Organizers say they exceeded their fundraising goal of $155,000.

The crowd applauds cancer survivors as they make their way around the track to open the American Cancer Society's Douglas County Relay For Life. The relay started at 7 p.m. Friday and ends at 7 this morning. Organizers say they exceeded their fundraising goal of $155,000.

June 9, 2007

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Relay for Life recognizes cancer survivors

Who would've thought that something simple as walking could lead to a cure for cancer? That's the hope for the hundreds of people who turned out tonight for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life. Enlarge video

Lawrence residents walk for cancer victims, cure

Lawrence residents are putting on their walking shoes tonight, but this isn't your ordinary stroll. Enlarge video

Three questions for Tina Yates, the co-chair for the Douglas County Relay For Life.

3 questions with ... Tina Yates, the co-chair for the Douglas County Relay For Life, talks about the this year's event. Enlarge video

For Dale Bellinger, early detection of lung cancer four years ago gave him his best chance at surviving, even if the detection was unintentional.

Bellinger might have found out about his lung cancer much later if it weren't for a stomach infection he was suffering.

When a technician took an X-ray too high on Bellinger's torso, his life changed. Doctors inadvertently discovered he had a tough case of lung cancer.

"It's scary," the longtime Lawrence resident said. "You don't know what's going to happen."

What happened to Bellinger was a three-month stay in the hospital and surgery to remove his lung cancer.

"He had a terrible stay in the hospital," his wife, Thelma Bellinger, said.

But four years later, Dale Bellinger found himself among nearly 200 other cancer survivors as they took a ceremonial lap on the Free State High School track for the first year of the Douglas County Relay for Life.

"Which I think is the most we've had take part in the survivors' lap," said Tina Yates, co-chairwoman of the Douglas County Relay for Life.

Those 200 or so cancer survivors from the area were cheered by nearly 900 participants and onlookers who came out to the Free State track on Friday for the 12-hour event to benefit the American Cancer Society.

The event registered 74 teams, which will be represented at all times by at least one team member walking or jogging laps around the track until 7 this morning.

Yates said the event raised more than its $155,000 fundraising goal, although organizers didn't have a final dollar amount to report Friday.

This year was the first year that the local Relay for Life event was expanded to include all of Douglas County rather than only Lawrence.

Yates said more teams participated, although there weren't as many people representing towns outside of Lawrence as organizers had hoped.

"Our goal for next year is to reach other communities," she said.

Comments

Danielle Brunin 7 years, 4 months ago

This is wonderful! Way to go guys!

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Dani Davey 7 years, 4 months ago

More than $155,000 is amazing! Congratulations Douglas County. If anyone is looking for a chance to get involved and don't want to wait until next year, there will be a Relay for Life in Shawnee on June 22. It's at Mill Valley High School at K-7 and Shawnee Mission Parkway and starts at 6pm. We'd love to have as many people as possible come out!

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