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Relay for Life 2012 [PICTURES]

Shay Hill

I mentioned a week or so back that I was doing Relay for Life for the first time this year. The company put together a team in my honor this year and I have to say it was an amazing event. You don’t realize how cancer touches everyone in some way until you go to an event such as Relay.

I told you in my last Relay for Life blog that I had been diagnosed with breast cancer recently and we were walking in this years Relay for Life, raising money for cancer research/awareness. We did the event Friday night (April 20th) and it was such an eye opening event. If you’ve been, you know what I’m talking about, if you haven’t then let me tell you a little about it.

The event is 12 hours starting at 7pm Friday night and continuing until 7am Saturday morning. Now I have to admit, I get tired pretty easy these days and I only stayed until about 10:30 Friday night. The rest of “Team Shay” continued to walk, even though it was getting pretty chilly.

The first lap is the “survivor” lap, which I walked with a group of very strong people in every age range. The second lap is for “caregivers”, my boyfriend and mom walked that lap together. The third lap is for “teams” and Team Shay was out in rare form, as usual.

When the sun went down there was the Luminary walk. This is when luminaria bags are decorated with names in “honor of” or “in memory of” and lit around the track. This is the most moving part of the whole event. What really gets you is when you walk the track and see young children gathered around a particular bag that is in “memory” of someone they loved, usually a parent. It’s very heartbreaking.

Although there is sadness there is definitely hope as well. Everyone is walking and participating in this event in order to give anyone with cancer hope and that is what is so infectious about the whole atmosphere.

I was busy visiting and walking the time that I was there but I did take a few photos. Maybe next year you will be able to join us in our walk.

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