Planning for 2015 Relay for Life starts here

Friday, October 24, 2014

By Ivory Riner

Staff Writer

The Marshall County American Cancer Society Relay for Life team had a successful kick-off Tuesday night at the Family Life Center of First Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

The leading women provided delicious finger foods as they launched their new fundraising efforts for the upcoming year.

The theme for the new year is "30 Years Strong," in remembrance of Dr. Gordy Klatt who founded Relay for Life in 1985. Klatt spent 24 hours walking and running around the track at Baker Stadium at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash. Family, friends, and patients paid $25 to walk or run 30 minutes with him. Klatt walked over 83 miles that day, raising $27,000 for cancer research. While walking, he envisioned having teams participate in a 24-hour event to raise money. Klatt passed away on Aug. 3 this year from heart failure after having stomach cancer, but his vision -- that has now grown nationwide and raised nearly $5 billion to save lives from the deadly disease -- still lives on.

Co-chairmen for the Marshall County team, Trina Rios and Lisa Steely, were sporting '80s ensembles to pitch the upcoming theme. The spunky neon-dressed ladies in their leg warmers presented trophies to last years' teams for their hard work and dedication raising money for the foundation. Trina has been with Relay for Life for nine years, including two years with the Giles County team, and captain of her team, AvKARE for three years. Today she is on the committee for both Marshall and Giles County. Lisa has been with the Marshall County team for 11 years, including three on the committee.

"More than 1.6 million people will hear the words 'you have cancer,' but if we all stand together with this fight, we can make cancer be a thing of the past. Eventually, the question will be, 'what is cancer?'" said Lisa. Last year the Marshall County team raised $66,000 for the fight, this year the goal is $100,000. Trina and Lisa want more businesses, churches, and health care facilities to get involved and raise money for the cause. The team members are now selling Relay for Life T-shirts in multiple colors and their charity walk is scheduled for Saturday, June 13, 2015, at Rock Creek Park from noon to midnight.

"We are so proud of the commitment made by Marshall County in the continued support of Relay for Life. We want to further our efforts to raise money and awareness of what Relay for Life is all about and the help of our community in furthering that effort," said Lisa.

To register a team or be a part of Relay for Life, call Trina at (931) 224-9887 or Lisa at (931) 698-7901.