Ellis County Relay for Life raises money for American Cancer Society

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For the past 24 years, the Relay for Life of Lima has been raising money for the American Cancer Society to help people here locally with their own fight with cancer, plus help find a cure for the bad disease.

Event organizers said Warren County consistently raises more than $300,000 each year to support patients, caregivers, and their families, along with programs and research.

The numbers had fallen in recent editions and the Canadian Cancer Society has undergone quite a few changes over the last few years.

"I held my grandmother's hand as she passed away from cancer", Hunt said through his long-tongued mask.

After the Relay for Life victory lap and march through town by survivors and their supporters, participants lit luminaries. While some moved solemnly along the line of hand-decorated luminaries, others shared stories and smiles as they pondered the beauty of life and the gift of another day to live it.

Edwards, who's chair of the event leadership team, said she was hoping for 200 walkers this year.

The "Pirates of the Cure-ibbean" instead spent the day searching for a different kind of buried treasure - donations to fund cancer research so the disease can finally "Walk the Plank".

"It's an automatic family bond", he said, adding his grandfather and grandmother are both cancer survivors.

They'll soon get started planning for next year.

The five-year cancer survival rate has almost tripled since the 1940s.

22News was a proud sponsor of Saturday's event.

"I relay for my family, myself and to raise awareness", she said.

And even before the relay began, St-Jean confirmed on Friday, the 2018 fundraising goal of $50,000 had been surpassed.

"It makes me sad to go around and see all the luminaries", Pam said.

1-3 p.m.: Band No Pressure; kids make crafts to give to cancer survivors.

For the relay, each team was given a baton, the idea being that at least one member be walking on the track at any given time, the symbolism being that no one is facing cancer alone. "She is at heavy risk of picking up infections quite quickly and she gets it hard to get rid of them but they have been so lovely", said Tammy. The intense treatment had taken such a toll on her body and mind, she thought about forgoing further treatment and resigning to the fact she wouldn't be around much longer.

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