Relay raises more than $20,000

About 15 teams took part in cancer group's event

Posted: Monday, July 29, 2002

Walkers and runners braved rain and cold to raise more than $20,000 in the American Cancer Society's Relay For Life event this weekend.

"We don't have the final count yet because there is some money still coming in, but we are very happy that we reached our ($20,000) goal and exceeded it," said Tuula Marquardt, a cancer society volunteer who organized the event. "It was very exciting."

About 15 teams ranging in size from six to 16 people participated in the relay, which took place over 12 hours at Dimond Park on Saturday.

Events began at 6 p.m., with members of each team trading turns walking or running around the track. Tents and campers were set up to keep participants dry between circuits, with entertainment provided throughout.

At midnight, a candle-lighting ceremony commemorated the memory of lives affected by cancer. Candles were donated by the community and in another show of generosity more than 450 were provided, Marquardt said.

Despite an intermittent drizzle, the candles burned steadily throughout the night.

"They stretched around the whole field," Marquardt said. "Everybody joined at midnight to walk around the track. It was amazing to see how many people had been touched by cancer, because those candles were for people that had been dealing with the cancer. Some had lost the battle and some are survivors and some are newly diagnosed."

Genevieve Gagne-Hawes can be reached at geneviev@juneauempire.com.



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