By Laurie L. Glover

My family, friends, and everyone’s family and friends have the right to hope for the best treatment and care when they are suddenly hit with the terrifying news that someone you love is diagnosed with cancer. Relay For Life is doing its part to fight for a cure through community fundraising and I am glad to be a part of this.

The goals of Relay For Life are many: to increase funding for cancer research, to encourage and make individuals aware of other groups and organizations that have the same goal, to fight cancer, and to make individuals aware of ways to protect themselves from this disease.

I think that it would be accurate to say that everyone has been touched by cancer: a parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle, son or daughter, cousin, or friend. My first cancer nightmare was quite a few years ago when my Mom had surgery to remove a kidney because of cancer. She is now 82 years young and a cancer survivor. My Dad, also a cancer survivor, was treated with radioactive pellets for prostate cancer and is 87 years young. My aunt and a cousin by marriage fought the breast cancer battle and I am happy to say they are also cancer survivors.

My beautiful, young granddaughter was diagnosed in March 2007. The word fight does not even come close to describing what that little girl had to go through. The battle is long and so painful to the family and friends of a loved one going through this, but nothing can compare to the pain and agony that the cancer patient has to go through. It was not just the treatments, but what she’s had to miss out on, like her class’s Christmas concert or sleeping over at a friend’s house or doing her dance on talent night with her friends or swimming with the rest of the family at the family reunion or sliding at the family sledding party. These sorts of things hurt Abbie almost as much as the battle itself.

I am so proud of that young lady. I cannot write about the battle itself because it is still too fresh in my mind and too painful to even put on paper. It is because of Abbie that I relay because she would not allow me to say no (she is very determined). I am so grateful that I can say she is a cancer survivor and she is eight years old, but still in treatment for another six months. After that, it is off to Hawaii for her Make-A-Wish vacation so she can frolic on the beaches, see the dolphins, and sleep outside in a tree cabin.


Not all cancer stories have happy endings. My father-in-law suffered a battle with lung cancer, my brother-in-law lost his battle with leukemia, my step-father-in-law fought a courageous battle with bone cancer and he will be remembered as a kind and generous man whom our whole family grew to love. A young woman who was a co-worker and friend lost her battle with pancreatic cancer.

I feel that cancer victims have a better chance at winning the battle and of being aware of necessary medical screenings and procedures to prevent the cancer, but having these tests are the responsibility of each and every one of us so please do not think that you are immune to the horrible disease and think it can only happen to someone else.

Just recently cancer cells were found when my husband went for his colonoscopy; he is 56 years old and should have had this procedure several years ago. We are not the kind of people to go to the doctor on a regular basis, but we should be. Had Dave gone six years ago he may have dodged this bullet. I have hope that all will turn out well, I believe it will. I relay so that everyone can feel hopeful and have faith that there is a cure or treatment for the type of cancer they or their loved ones are diagnosed with.

Cancer comes in all different disguises and Relay For Life fights against every one of them. Whether it is breast cancer, bone cancer, prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer, leukemia, kidney, or any other type of cancer, we all want help on our side and a reason to hope… That is why I relay.

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