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Survivors lap to kick off Relay for Life

By SHARON DAY

Relay for Life

In a nation where more than 1,529,560 people will be diagnosed with cancer this year, with 569,490 estimated deaths.

Decatur County is invited to celebrate life.

Relay For Life is an American Cancer Society event where no one fights cancer alone. At the Relay for Life, cancer survivors are invited to walk the first lap in a celebration of victory against their battle with cancer.

The 2011 Relay For Life of Decatur County will be held Friday, May 13, beginning at 6 p.m. at the Bainbridge Middle School track. The survivors lap will begin at 6 p.m. and registration for survivors begins at 5. Survivors can also register in advance by calling Suzy or Keith Harrison at (229) 416-5997 or (229) 400-2367.

Relay For Life is the American Cancer Society’s signature fund-raising activity. It began in 1985 when Dr. Gordy Klatt of Tacoma, Wash., walked around a track for 24 hours and raised $27,000 for the American Cancer Society.

Relay For Life has grown into an international annual event that is held in 19 countries, on six continents and in 5,146 communities.

Today, Relay For Life is the largest nonprofit fund-raising activity in the world, with more than 3.5 million participants and 600,000 survivors. While each community’s Relay For Life is unique; it’s greater power lies in the synergy created by all the relays taking place worldwide.

The Relay For Life of Decatur County began in 1993 and has raised more than $850,000 for the American Cancer Society.

Funds generated through relay support your American Cancer Society both locally and nationally. By 2015, the society aims to prevent close to 5 million additional deaths from cancer, avoid 6 million new cancer diagnoses, and measurably improve the quality of life for those who have cancer. Community support is bringing us closer to realizing these challenging goals.

At Relay For Life events, participants also become more knowledgeable about cancer prevention and early detection, and learn more about services that are available to cancer patients and their families, as well as opportunities to become more involved in the fight against cancer.

For more information about your local Relay For Life, visit www.relayforlife.org or call Beth Zotyka, community manager at (229) 246-0030 or (229) 220-4476. You can also visit the event Web site at www.relayforlife.org\decaturga.