April 1, 2000 I lost my mom to cancer, I was 36, way too young to lose my mother, I still had questions for her, still needed answers, support, there were still too many things to talk about. In 2005, my community had their first Relay for Life event, it was the beginning of a very good thing in my life.
Relay for Life is an American Cancer Society event, it happens in over 4000 communities around the world. It began in 1986 by an oncologist, Dr. Gordy Klatt, who wanted to run through the night to support his patients. It has grown to the largest fundraising event that ACS does. There are many parts of Relay that I love. The season is awesome if you live in a small town especially, every week there is another fundraiser to attend, and they run the full gamut, from Bid for Bachelors to car washes; scrapbook crops to Bunko – I love the “season.” This is our chance to Fight Back – raise money to help fund the cure.
The Relay event itself has some common themes across the country. There is always a Survivor Lap – at least one lap to Celebrate those that have had cancer and made it through. After dark, there will be the Luminaria Ceremony. This is one of those cool things that you have to experience to really get it. The lights are turned down and luminarias are lit all around the track, it is a solemn, heart filling ceremony, your chance to Remember those we have lost to cancer.
I also enjoy creating luminarias, that’s how I spent a few hours this afternoon, Remembering those who I’ve lost and Celebrating those that are still fighting.
Two weekends ago, we held our Grand National event for W.E. Rock, our drivers and teams were treated to an awards dinner and they responded by contributing $835 to our Relay for Life fundraiser. On Saturday night this week, we will hold another fundraiser for Relay at our Dirt Riot Nationals – I bet my teams will respond as well there.
I already have my Relay page set up for fundraising, so, if you are so inclined, go on to the American Cancer Society secure donation site here and donate in the name of someone important to you that has had cancer, help us to find the cure.