The Relay for Life, in association with the American Cancer Society, hosted a two-day fundraising walk located in the Health Enhancement Center starting at 6 p.m. Friday, April 25.
The purpose of the event was to raise money for the fight against cancer and to bring together people of the community to celebrate the lives of survivors and remember loved ones that have been lost.
Sophomore Brittney Doll said she loves Relay for Life and all of the enthusiasm, honor and strength it brings.
“A lot of people can associate themselves with cancer, whether it is themselves or an acquaintance that has dealt with its consequences,” Doll said. “I personally have had multiple people close to me diagnosed with cancer and that’s a hard thing to cope with. It’s a dark issue and I really think it’s something that needs to be brought to light.”
Doll said she appreciates what the American Cancer Society is doing and will do anything to support their efforts in the Stevens Point area.
“This year I was the captain of the Phi Omega Sorority team,” Doll said. “Last year I was on the Smith Hall Volunteer Committee team. I still helped the Smith Hall Volunteer Committee team this year, however, I focused most of my time on my sorority.”
Doll’s team held numerous fundraisers and also asked for donations from family and friends.
“One of my girls raised over $300 by herself in donations,” Doll said. “For fundraisers we sold baked goods, did penny wars, and had a ‘Pie a Sorority Lady’ event where we stood in the DUC for a day and let participants pie us in the face with whipped cream for a dollar each. It was a huge success.”
Freshman Lauren Meyer has participated in the Relay for Life since she was 8 years old and has had family members affected by cancer.
“I was excited to be involved with Relay for Life in a different city,” Meyer said. “I normally participate in Relay for Life in my hometown of Racine, so it was nice to see the differences between relays.”
Freshman Ashley Otto also participated in the event.
“I did Relay for Life last year in my hometown because my friend lost her little brother to cancer,” Otto said. “I saw how much of an impact our small town made and decided to do it again this year.”
Otto also has some connections to cancer as well.
“My uncle passed away from a brain tumor, my grandma is fighting breast cancer, my great aunt has recovered from breast cancer and my grandpa has also recovered from prostate cancer,” Otto said.
Otto’s team was Operation CURE because they thought it would symbolize that they are on a mission to find a cure for cancer.
“We all asked family and friends for donations and we did a jellybean guess fundraiser,” Otto said.
Otto said she was excited to see how many students would support the cause and stay up all night.
“It’s a great experience for a great cause,” Otto said. “It’s raising money to fight back against cancer and to hopefully find a cure. We relay for the survivors, the caregivers of the survivors, and those we’ve lost.”
Doll really enjoyed the Remember/Luminaria Ceremony that took place at 10 p.m.
“It’s just a really emotional time,” Doll said. “I’ve had many people close to me diagnosed with cancer and that hits home. There’s a lot of crying, but the tears really mean something. It’s really special, how friends come together to remember those affected in our lives.”
According to Cancer.org, this year there will be an estimated 585,720 cancer-related deaths in the United States.
“This is our chance to fight for a cure and to give hope to our loved ones that are fighting cancer,” Otto said. “I really recommend everyone getting involved in the future. Even if you’re really busy, just sign up with a team and ask your family and friends for donations. It only takes 15 minutes of your time to help fight against cancer.”