Hundreds participate in Fayette Relay for Life
Lisa Rose, co-chairwoman of the American Cancer Society's Fayette Relay for Life, joined the fundraising event nine years ago as a breast cancer survivor.
And now years later, Rose keeps going. She was one of many cancer survivors and their families who participated in the 20th annual event at Penn State Fayette, The Eberly Campus. This year's theme was “Celebrating Years at Hope.”
“I knew that I had to help with this fundraiser when I became a cancer survivor,” Rose said. “I was motivated to do this so I could help other people who are going through the same thing that I faced. I know how difficult it is when you are diagnosed with cancer.”
The 24-hour fundraiser kicked off at noon Saturday during opening ceremonies.
Barb Yalich Fike, chairwoman of this year's event, welcomed the crowd, saying, “Our hope for the event is that all of you have a great time as we work for a good cause — reaching our goal for a cure.”
This year's fundraising goal was set at $150,000, according to Andrea King, the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life specialist, the only paid employee who was working with about 30 volunteers who organized the event.
“We've already raised about $80,000,” King said. “We're hoping to raise the rest of the money over the weekend. We raised $146,000 last year, and we're hoping to surpass that amount.”
During the past 20 years, Yalich Fike said the most money that was raised was a little less than $200,000.
“We're hoping to see a large crowd and raise a lot of money this year because the weather is cooperating,” Yalich Fike said. “It's a beautiful day, and it's not too hot.”
King said money raised at the event is earmarked for education and local programs, including “Road to Recovery,” that provides cancer patients with rides to treatment, and “Look Good ... Feel Better,” which helps women find appropriate wigs and makeup to help them deal with the effects of chemotherapy.
Yalich Fike said she expected a constant stream of about 300 to 1,000 people throughout the daylong event.
As the opening ceremonies began, Gino Mollica, 16, and Grace Fike, the 7-year-old daughter of Yalich Fike, sang the national anthem as the Laurel Highlands Junior ROTC presented the flag.
“Relay is a celebration of life,” Yalich Fike told the crowd. “The Relay for Life is a team effort. We hope you will enjoy all of the festivities and take the time to visit all of the campsites and make some new friends.”
Runners from the Fayette Striders and the local track teams carried the torch of hope through Fayette County communities.
“This torch of hope represents our special commitment to Relay and the hope to someday conquer cancer,” Yalich Fike said.
Cancer survivor Shelly Ralston carried the torch and handed it to Stacey Ann Redshaw Dolfi, 32, a cancer survivor and the ambassador for this year's event.
Dolfi was diagnosed with Stage 2A Hodgkin's lymphoma in August 2003 at the age of 21. She underwent six months of chemotherapy.
She was treated every two weeks for hours at the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center in Pittsburgh. She then completed 17 rounds of radiation at UPMC Shadyside. In April 2004, she completed all of her treatment. Five years later, she was considered to be cured.
Cindy Ekas is a contributing writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Connellsville planners OK hotel proposal
- Local lawmakers question Wolf’s budget plan
- Laurel Highlands Ambassador Program offers insight into history of Connellsville coal, coke region
- Man admits to posing as doctor to con Nemacolin resort
- Uniontown woman testifies she feared for life in robbery
- Program recognizes Connellsville Career and Technical Center students
- Officials: Fay-West residents must stay prepared for bad weather
- College credit program may return to Connellsville
- St. Rita of Cascia Roman Catholic Church marks centennial in Connellsville
- Carnegie Free Library plans Big Book Sale
- Connellsville Recreation Board looks for more choices at Movies at East Park