Getting an early start

Published 5:13 pm Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Although winter still has a strong grip on eastern North Carolina, there are signs that spring is just around the corner. One of the signs is the preparation by teams for the upcoming Relay for Life.

This year’s Beaufort County Relay for life begins at 6 p.m. May 2 at the Washington High School track.

Although Relay for Life is two months away, teams are planning for upcoming fundraising events to raise money for the battle against cancer. Actually, the fundraising is under way. According to the American Cancer Society’s events website, 29 teams in Beaufort County had raised $4,996.81 as of Tuesday morning. So far, the top fundraising team is the Beaufort County Health Department, which has collected $1,686.81. Before it’s all said and done this year, the Beaufort County teams will have raised thousands more dollars.

Fundraising events include bake sales, dove hunts, car washes and myriad other activities. But Relay for Life is more than just about raising funds. Relay for Live raises hope in the ongoing battle against cancer. Almost everyone knows a family member, co-worker, neighbor or fellow church member who has cancer, died from cancer or, thank goodness, survived cancer. Relay for Life is about providing hope — and, one day, a cure — to cancer victims, their families and their caregivers.

Cancer is no respecter of persons, attacking young children, young adults and the elderly.

Relay for Life provides an opportunity for men, women, boys and girls who are fighting or have fought cancer to walk around the track at Washington High School and bond with others who know their suffering and struggles.

Perhaps no lap during a Relay for Life event is more important than the Survivors Lap in which cancer survivors kick off the event by walking around the track together — a show of solidarity that goes far beyond just strolling on the oval.

So, the next time you’re out and about and see a bake sale being held to raise money for Relay for Life, buy a pie. The next time you drive past a group washing cars to raise money for Relay for Life, turn around and have your car washed — even if it really doesn’t need it.

Every dollar raised for Relay for Life improves researchers’ chances when it comes to finding a cure for cancer. The more dollars raised, the faster that cure can be found.