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Making A Difference

By Staff | Aug 2, 2011

A “mini” Relay For Life brought the crowd out Sunday, late afternoon and evening.

Remember the torrential rains that forced cancellation of this annual event mid June? It rained buckets!

Sunday was hot – in the low 90s with the heat index in the upper 90s – but that didn’t deter people from gathering on Courthouse Square. Teams set up camp under tents, the St. Pat’s Showmobile provided shade for the emcee and entertainers, and spray from the dunk tank was welcome relief from the heat.

American Cancer Society flags blew in the southerly breeze:?”Celebrate” – “Remember” – “Fight Back.”

Luminaries were lined up along the sidewalk, honoring those who lost the fight against cancer and those who are fighting back against cancer. At dusk they provided a glowing reminder to “Celebrate” – “Remember” – “Fight Back.”

Congratulations to the committee for organizing Relay For Life — not once, but twice this year. We appreciate your efforts.

I have been reading the book “Promise?Me” by Nancy G. Brinker, founder of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Subtitle of the book is “How a Sister’s Love Launched the Global Movement to End Breast Cancer.” Susan G. Komen died of breast cancer at age 36.

The book starts at the beginning, when Suzy and Nancy Goodman were growing up in Illinois. They were taught, from childhood, that small acts of charity could change the world.

Suzy was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1977. During the course of her treatment, which was far from what it is today, she asked her sister to make three promises:

To promise to end the silence surrounding breast cancer (remember, this was 1977). To promise to raise money for scientific research. To promise to one day cure breast cancer for good.

Nancy’s response was, “I promise, Suzy, even if it takes the rest of my life.”

Nancy started with a shoe box filled with the names of potential donors, and Susan G. Komen for the Cure was born. Through the years, Nancy G. Brinker has gained the backing of people around the world. She also fought the battle of breast cancer herself, and was more fortunate than her sister.

At the time the book was written, the foundation had contributed more than $1.5 billion for cutting-edge research and community programs. Nancy G. Brinker dedicated the majority of her royalties from “Promise?Me” to Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Participating locally in Relay For Life, as a team member or as a community member who purchases a luminary, is a way to “Celebrate” – “Remember” – “Fight Back.” Small acts of charity can change the world.